PRO BASKETBALL—The playoffs got under way in the NBA, with 16 teams competing in best-of-five series. Three of the league's dominant squads—the Lakers, Celtics and Pistons—all handled their opponents with relative ease, each going 2-0 in their series. Boston, with 65 points from forward Larry Bird, had the Knicks on the verge of elimination after beating them 112-92 and 128-102. Los Angeles cruised past the Spurs 122-110 and 130-112 as Laker forward James Worthy scored 22 points in the opening game and forward Mychal Thompson came off the bench with 29 points and 16 rebounds in Game 2. Guard Isiah Thomas led the way with 64 points for Detroit as the Pistons beat the Bullets 96-87 and 102-101. The Bulls-Cavaliers series was the Michael Jordan Show, with the Chicago guard scoring in every way imaginable. He had 50 points in the Bulls' 104-93 opening-game win and 55 in Game 2, a 106-101 victory. The Hawks were also just one game away from a series sweep after defeating the Bucks twice, 110-107 and 104-97. Atlanta forward Dominique Wilkins poured in 43 points in Game 2. Center Akeem Olajuwon of the Rockets asserted himself in a big way on Saturday, scoring 41 points and grabbing 26 rebounds in a 119-108 Houston win over the Mavericks that avenged a 120-110 loss earlier in the week. Guard Sleepy Floyd had 42 points for the Rockets in their triumph. The Jazz got an Akeem-like performance from forward Karl Malone, who had 37 points and 16 rebounds in Utah's 114-105 win on Saturday over the Trail Blazers. That evened the Portland-Utah series at 1-1. The SuperSonics stormed back to even their series as well, with a 111-91 win over the Nuggets. Seattle forward Xavier McDaniel had 23 points and 17 rebounds in that win (page 38).
BOWLING—MARK WILLIAMS defeated Tony Westlake 237-214 in the title game to win the PBA's Tournament of Champions and $50,000 in Akron.
GOLF—CURTIS STRANGE, who sank a four-foot birdie putt to tie Greg Norman on the final hole of regulation at 18-under-par 270, dropped a 25-footer on the third hole of sudden death to win $126,000 and a PGA event in The Woodlands, Texas.
Orville Moody and Bruce Crampton won the Legends of Golf tournament and $120,000 when Moody sank a 12-foot birdie putt on the sixth playoff hole to defeat the team of Tommy Aaron and Lou Graham in Austin, Texas. The two teams finished regulation play in the better-ball tournament tied at 26-under-par 254 (page 88).
May 8, 1988
Patti Rizzo birdied the fifth sudden-death playoff hole to defeat Sherri Turner and win $50,250 and an LPGA event in Nashville. Rizzo and Turner had tied at 207, nine under par.
HOCKEY—The Stanley Cup playoffs narrowed to four teams as all the divisional titles were decided. In the Patrick Division, Devils forward John MacLean scored with 6:11 remaining to break a tie and lead New Jersey to a 3-2 win over the Capitals in the seventh and deciding game of their series (page 26). The Devils' opponent in the Wales Conference playoffs will be the Bruins, who became the Adams Division champions by defeating the Canadiens in five games. Boston was powered by two goals apiece from forwards Cam Neely and Steve Kasper in the 4-1 Game 5 victory. It was the Bruins' first playoff series win over Montreal since 1943. In the Norris Division the Red Wings also triumphed in five games, disposing of the Blues as forward Tim Higgins scored the deciding goal with 2:25 remaining in the 4-3 series-clinching win. Detroit's next opponent is the red-hot Oilers, who completed a sweep of the Flames with a 6-4 victory in the fourth game of the Smythe Division playoffs.
HORSE RACING—GRANACUS ($33.60), with Jacinto Vasquez aboard, defeated Intensive Command by three lengths in the Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland. The 3-year-old colt, who earned $190,856, covered the 1‚Äö√Ñ√∂‚àö√±‚àö¬µ miles in 1:52[1/5].
In the week's other Kentucky Derby prep race, JIM'S ORBIT ($21), ridden by Shane Romero, beat Kingpost by a nose to win the Derby Trial and $36,952 at Churchill Downs. The 3-year-old colt went the mile in a slow 1:38[3/5].
INDOOR SOCCER—Kansas City completed a sweep of Los Angeles with a 7-5 victory, and San Diego won two in a row, 7-2 and 7-6, over Tacoma, to win their respective Western Division semifinal series and set up a showdown between them. In the East, Cleveland eliminated Dallas with a 5-4 double-overtime win and a more comfortable 5-2 victory. In the only semifinal series still undecided, Minnesota led Baltimore two games to one.
MARATHON—MARGARET GROOS won the U.S. Women's Olympic Trials in Pittsburgh in 2:29:50 to become the top qualifier for the team. Nancy Ditz (2:30:14) and Cathy O'Brien (2:30:18) finished second and third, respectively, and won the other two Olympic berths (page 49).
MOTOR SPORTS—PHIL PARSONS, in an Oldsmobile, beat Bobby Allison, in a Buick, by .21 of a second to win a NASCAR race and $86,850 at the Alabama International Motor Speedway in Talladega. Parsons averaged 156.547 mph for 188 laps on the 2.66-mile oval.
TENNIS—KENT CARLSSON beat Henri Leconte 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 to win the German Open and $118,000, in Hamburg, West Germany.
Pam Shriver defeated Helena Sukova 7-5, 6-1 to win the Pan Pacific tournament in Tokyo. Shriver earned $50,000.
MILEPOSTS—ANNOUNCED: By the NBA and the players' association, a six-year collective bargaining agreement that substantially increases the salary cap under which the league's teams must operate and reduces the NBA's annual draft of college players to three rounds this year and two rounds beginning in 1989 (page 17).
FILED FOR BANKRUPTCY: The San Diego Seekers, the MISL's title-winning team in three of the past five seasons, as a result of debts totaling $1 million.
HIRED: As coach of the men's basketball team at the University of New Orleans. TIM FLOYD, 34. Floyd resigned earlier in the week from Idaho, where he amassed a 35-25 record in two seasons, and was replaced there by assistant coach KERMIT DAVIS JR., 28. Davis is the youngest men's basketball head coach at an NCAA Division I school.
As men's basketball coach at Rhode Island, AL SKINNER, 36, who had been a Rams assistant.
RESIGNED: As coach of the New Mexico men's basketball team. GARY COLSON, who guided the Lobos to a 146-106 record in his eight seasons.
SUSPENDED: For three games by the NHL, forward MARTY McSORLEY of the Edmonton Oilers, for spearing forward Mike Bullard of the Calgary Flames in the third game of the Smythe Division finals.
DIED: BEN LEXCEN, 52, designer of the yacht Australia II, which, fitted with Lexcen's innovative winged keel, won the America's Cup in 1983 and ended the 132-year domination of the event by the U.S.; of a heart attack; in Sydney.