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PRO BASKETBALL—There were 14,890 fans at the Boston Garden for the Celtics' Friday night outing against the Sixers when a hockey game broke out: Superstars Larry Bird and Julius Erving squared off, the benches cleared, and both Bird and Erving were ejected. Before the melee, Bird had outscored Dr. J 42-6. Boston won 130-119 to move half a game ahead of Philadelphia in the Atlantic Division. But Washington handed the Celts their first loss of the season, 112-95, the following night, and Boston found itself tied with Philly. Houston became the only unbeaten team as the Rockets defeated Kansas City, Seattle and the Los Angeles Clippers and went 1� games ahead in the Midwest Division. Previously undefeated Phoenix lost twice but beat Cleveland 112-111 to remain on top of the Pacific Division. Behind the play of rookie Michael Jordan, who had 85 points, Chicago beat Detroit, New York and Indiana to move into a tie for the Central Division lead with Milwaukee, which was 2-1 for the week.
BOXING—LARRY HOLMES stopped James (Bone-crusher) Smith in the 12th round to retain his heavyweight title, in Las Vegas (page 50).
PRO FOOTBALL—In its first game since coach John McKay announced his end-of-the-season retirement last week, Tampa Bay upset the Giants 20-17. Dallas beat St. Louis 24-17, thus halving the number of teams atop the NFC East from four to two. Washington won twice, defeating Atlanta 27-14 and Detroit 28-14, to pull even with the Cowboys. Denver needed a touchdown by Sammy Winder with 38 seconds remaining to beat San Diego 16-13 and build its lead to 1� games over Seattle in the AFC West. San Francisco, way out in front in the NFC West, steamrolled Cleveland 41-7. Without Jim McMahon, who will be out a month with a lacerated kidney, Chicago bowed to the Rams 29-13. No matter: The Bears are still three games up in the NFC Central. Miami stayed on top of the world, not to mention the AFC East, with a 24-23 win over the Eagles. The big play: Dolphin Doug Betters' block of Eagle kicker Paul McFadden's PAT attempt with 1:52 to play. The Bengals tightened the race in the AFC Central by beating the division-leading Steelers 22-20. In other games, Indianapolis upset the Jets 9-5 on the strength of a trio of Raul Allegre three-run homers—er, field goals; New Orleans beat Atlanta 17-13; Green Bay thrashed Minnesota 45-17; and Houston defeated Kansas City 17-16, leaving Buffalo, a 38-10 loser to New England, as the last winless team in the league.
GOLF—Japan's team of TETSUO SAKATA, KAZUHIKO KATO, NORIAKI KIMURA and KIYO-TAKA OIE shot a four-day total of 870 to defeat the runner-up U.S. by seven strokes and win the Eisenhower Cup in the 38-team Men's World Amateur Team Championship in Hong Kong.
HOCKEY—With the NHL record book already the personal r�sum� of Smythe Division-leading Edmonton's Wayne Gretzky, he and his Oiler mates have apparently decided to try to turn the book's team stats into their special province. After a 3-3 tie with Pittsburgh and a 3-2 win over New Jersey, Edmonton beat Washington 8-5 to set a league record by going unbeaten for 15 games (12-0-3) at the start of a season, surpassing a mark set by Montreal in 1943. The Oilers' streak ended Sunday with a 7-5 loss to Philadelphia, which shut out St. Louis 6-0 earlier in the week and remained atop the Patrick Division. Chicago, pacesetter in the Norris Division, beat Los Angeles 3-2 and Calgary 5-3, and tied Toronto 4-4. Boston, with two wins over Detroit and a 1-1 tie with the Blues, wrested the Adams Division lead from Montreal (page 44).
HORSE RACING—WILD AGAIN ($64.60), Pat Day up, held off Gate Dancer and Slew O' Gold in a wild stretch run to win by a head the $3 million Breeders' Cup Classic, the final event in the seven-race, $10 million Breeders' Cup series at Hollywood Park. The 4-year-old colt ran the 1� miles in 2:03[2/5] (page 36).
INDOOR SOCCER—San Diego fell from first in the Western Division after a 5-3 loss to pace-setting Las Vegas Sunday night. In that game, Vegas goalie Keith Van Eron threw in the second goal of his career—this one shorthanded. Pittsburgh, which drubbed Kansas City 10-6, and St. Louis, which edged Baltimore on a goal by Rick Davis 6:01 into overtime, eased into a tie for first in the East.
MOTOR SPORTS—TOM SNEVA, in a March 84C, finished 6.47 seconds ahead of Mario Andretti, in a Lola T-800, to win the $450,000 Caesars Palace Grand Prix in Las Vegas. Andretti's finish earned him the PPG Cup and a $300,000 bonus as the top point-getter in CART's 16-race season.
Dale Earnhardt drove a Chevrolet to a 56-second victory over pole sitter Bill Elliott, driving a Ford, to win a $326,450 NASCAR Grand National race at Atlanta International Raceway. Earnhardt averaged 134.610 mph for the 328 laps around the 1.522-mile banked oval. On the 129th lap, TERRY SCHOONOVER, 32, hit the outside wall coming out of turn No. 2, slid across the speedway and struck the inside wall. He was pronounced dead on arrival at Atlanta's Georgia Baptist Hospital from head and internal injuries.