PRO BASKETBALL—When Boston met Milwaukee last year in the NBA Eastern Conference semifinals, Bill Fitch was the Celtic coach, Harry T. Mangurian Jr. was the team's owner, Tiny Archibald was a Boston guard and Beantown was embarrassed in four straight. But how times change. Now, with K.C. Jones on the bench, three businessmen backing the team and Dennis Johnson replacing the released Archibald, the Celtics took a commanding 3-0 lead over the Bucks in the East finals. "It's frustrating," Milwaukee center Bob Lanier said. "We're playing hard but we're sticking ourselves in a hole—sort of like being in quicksand." And how quickly the Bucks sank. On Tuesday, when Milwaukee lost 119-96 in Boston, Lanier scored only one bucket and Sidney Moncrief was held to a baker's dozen, while the Celts, led by Larry Bird's 24 points, had seven men in double figures. On Thursday, again in Boston, the Bucks were on the wrong side of a 125-110 tally; they never pulled closer than 12 points in the second half. But Game 3 in Milwaukee began differently. Perhaps remembering coach Don Nelson's observation that to beat Boston "we have to not only play up to our potential, we'll have to play over it," the Bucks stormed to a 63-50 halftime lead behind double-digit performances from Moncrief, Mike Dunleavy and Junior Bridgeman. Milwaukee's joy, however, was short-lived. Celtic guard Gerald Henderson had 11 points in the third quarter as the Celtics outscored Milwaukee 32-22 and held on for a 109-100 win. In the Western Conference, Los Angeles took a 3-1 lead in its series against Phoenix (page 68).
PRO FOOTBALL—USFL: Prior to Arizona and Denver's first meeting of the season on April Fool's Day, Gold coach Craig Morton was heard to mumble words like "liar," "cheat" and "thief when referring to Wrangler coach George Allen. Denver then added injury to insult by beating Arizona 17-7. This did not make for happy Wranglers. Arizona cheered up considerably this week by humiliating the Pacific Division-leading Gold 41-6 and handing Denver its fifth straight defeat. Houston, meanwhile, had a score to settle with the Oklahoma Outlaws, dating back to March 31 when the Gamblers blew a 15-point lead with two minutes to play and lost 31-28 in overtime. The outcome was decidedly different this time. Houston quarterback Jim Kelly threw three touchdown passes in the first half as the Gamblers beat Oklahoma 31-12 and took sole possession of the Central Division lead. Earlier in the week, the Outlaws had lost 48-21 to Tampa Bay; the Bandits went on to dismantle New Orleans' power ground game in a 31-20 win. Philadelphia, the Atlantic Division pacesetter, set a team record for points by scoring on every possession of the first three quarters as they bullied the Jacksonville Bulls 45-12 en route to their 10th consecutive victory. Oakland safety Marcus Quinn intercepted four passes in the fourth period—giving him a league-leading 11 for the season—as the Invaders won their fourth straight game by beating Memphis 29-14. Southern Division-leading Birmingham ripped Chicago 41-7; Los Angeles defeated Michigan 24-17 and San Antonio beat Washington 30-14.
GOLF—PETER JACOBSEN birdied the first hole in sudden death to win the $500,000 Colonial National Invitational in Fort Worth. Both he and Payne Stewart had finished at 10-under-par 270.
Barb Bunkowsky shot a 10-under-par 209 to finish four strokes ahead of Muffin Spencer-Devlin and win a 54-hole, $175,000 LPGA event in Clifton, N.J.
HOCKEY—The EDMONTON OILERS defeated the New York Islanders four games to one to win the Stanley Cup (page 28).
HORSE RACING—GATE DANCER ($11.60), Angel Cordero Jr. up, beat Play On by 1� lengths to win the $338,600 Preakness at Pimlico. The 3-year-old colt covered the 1[3/16] miles in a stakes-record 1:53[3/5] (page 34).
LACROSSE—HOBART COLLEGE won its fifth-straight NCAA Division III title with a 12-5 victory over Washington College of Maryland in Geneva, N.Y.
INDOOR SOCCER—MISL: Obviously, the force was not with Cleveland; Baltimore completed a three-game sweep of the Force to win the Eastern crown and make it to the league championships. Already leading 1-0 in games, the Blast eked out a 6-5 win at Cleveland and then nailed the coffin shut with a 7-2 shellacking in Baltimore four days later as defender Heinz Wirtz and forwards Pat Ercoli and Dave Mac-Williams scored two goals apiece. St. Louis took a 2-0 lead in the Western finals, beating Wichita 4-3 and 7-6.
SOCCER—NASL: Minnesota remained atop the Western Division despite a 2-1 loss to Chicago, while Toronto and New York took shares of the Eastern Division lead, courtesy of a couple of Robertos. The Blizzard beat Tulsa 2-1 in OT as Roberto Bettega scored his second-straight game-winning goal 1:48 into the extra period, and the Cosmos triumphed 2-1 over Vancouver as Roberto Cabanas, last year's league scoring leader, got both of his team's goals. The Whitecaps also lost to Tampa Bay 4-1, and San Diego defeated Golden Bay 3-2 in a shootout.
TENNIS—ANDRES GOMEZ defeated Aaron Krickstein 2-6, 6-1, 6-2, 6-2 to win the $300,000 Italian Open.