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SI PICK OF THE
How good is the UCLA men's volleyball team? It scoffs at the Bruins' basketball team's 11 NCAA titles. The Wallopers of Westwood have won 18, and they can add another in Happy Valley this weekend. Paced by juniors Steve Klosterman (above, left) and Paul George (right), the Bruins rallied from a 12--12 start to win their final 12 matches--the last 10 came after their coach, Al Scates, started wearing a tie to games. UCLA will be joined in the Final Four by Penn State, Indiana University-- Purdue University Fort Wayne and UC Irvine. Thursday 6 p.m. ESPNU, Saturday ESPN2 7 p.m.
NBA Playoffs, Nets at Pacers Game 6 The biggest thorn in New Jersey's side this series has been a familiar one. Guard Anthony Johnson (above, right), who averaged 3.5 points a game in two seasons as a Net before the team chose not to re-sign him in 2003, has torched his former team for 16.5 per game this series, including the winning free throws in Game 1. Said Johnson's former mentor, New Jersey point guard Jason Kidd, "I'm happy for him.... But at the same time, I want to see him miss a couple more shots." Check listings
Wachovia Championship Last year at Quail Hollow in Charlotte, Phil Mickelson ran off nine birdies in the first 15 holes of the final round before stumbling down the stretch. Should he slip up again, there will be a host of big names waiting to pounce: 10 of the world's top 11 players will be in the field. Thursday and Friday USA 4 p.m., Saturday and Sunday CBS 3 p.m.
Braves at Mets Could this finally be the year? The Mets and the rest of the NL East have been looking up at Atlanta after each of the last 14 seasons. But thanks to ex-Brave Tom Glavine (right), who's 3--2 with a 2.29 ERA, New York has the best ERA (3.06) in the majors--and a seven-game lead on Atlanta. TBS 7 p.m.
Oscar De La Hoya vs. Ricardo Mayorga Last month Mayorga said he had been sparring with live chickens to prepare for his super welterweight title bout with De La Hoya. He wasn't pulling a Rocky Balboa--who actually chased fowl in an alley to improve his footwork. No, Mayorga was just trying to goad the Golden Boy, saying the birds "emulate 'Chicken' De La Hoya best. They run just like he does." PPV 9 p.m.