PRO BASKETBALL—The NBA playoff field narrowed to four teams, and play began in the two best-of-seven conference final series. In the West, the Suns, who had beaten the Warriors 116-104—Phoenix's Tom Chambers, Kevin Johnson and Dan Majerle had 24 points apiece—to seal a four-games-to-one quarterfinals victory, took on the defending world champion Lakers, who were fresh from sweeps of the Trail Blazers and the SuperSonics. Los Angeles took the opener 127-119 to extend its playoff winning streak, dating back to last June, to 10 games, an NBA record. The Lakers were paced by James Worthy's game-high 32 points, but needed help from their bench when Magic Johnson left the game with 4:07 remaining in the third period after drawing his fifth foul. Orlando Wool-ridge came to the rescue by scoring nine of his 13 points in the final 16 minutes. In a taste of what promises to be a Johnson & Johnson series, the Suns took a 92-91 lead when their Johnson—guard Kevin, who finished with 27 points and 18 assists—made a three-pointer at the start of the fourth period. But Magic came back into the game and, with 7:03 remaining, sank a 17-foot jumper that put the Lakers ahead for good. In the East, the Pistons advanced to the conference finals by completing a sweep of the injury-depleted Bucks with a 96-94 victory. NBA rules require a team to dress at least nine players for a playoff game, but so battered were the Bucks—with starters Terry Cummings (sprained ankle), Paul Pressey (separated shoulder) and Larry Krystkowiak (knee surgery) among the wounded—that Milwaukee could produce only eight fit players and was forced to get a special exemption from the league. Despite being shorthanded, the Bucks led 45-24 midway through the second quarter and never fell more than eight points behind. The Pistons prevailed, on 22 points from Joe Dumars and a triple double (17 points, 13 assists and 10 rebounds) from Isiah Thomas. Their next opponents, the Bulls, lost the fifth game of their quarterfinal series against the Knicks 121-114 as New York center Patrick Ewing scored 32 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, but Chicago recovered to take the series with a 113-111 Game 6 win. Michael Jordan, who had 40 points, clinched the victory by making a pair of free throws with four seconds left. In Game 1 of the conference finals, Jordan scored 32 and the Bulls won 94-88 (page 20).
BOWLING—HARRY SULLINS beat Dennis Horan Jr. 40-26 in a sudden-death roll-off to win a PBA event in Phoenix. Sullins, who had finished the title game tied with Horan at 189, earned $27,000.
BOXING—JORGE PAEZ retained his IBF featherweight title with a 12-round draw with Louie Espinoza in Phoenix.
GOLF—IAN BAKER-FINCH fired a 10-under-par 270 to win a PGA event and $180,000 in Fort Worth. Runner-up David Edwards finished four strokes back.
May 28, 1989
Nancy Lopez shot a final-round six-under-par 66 to defeat Ayako Okamoto by three strokes and win her third LPGA Championship, in Kings Island, Ohio. Lopez, who finished with a 14-under-par 274, earned $75,000 (page 65).
HOCKEY—In the Stanley Cup finals, the Canadiens beat the Flames 4-2 and 4-3, before Calgary came back to win Game 4, 4-2, and tie the series at two games apiece (page 22).
HORSE RACING—SUNDAY SILENCE ($6.20), Pat Valenzuela up, beat Easy Goer by a nose to win the 114th Preakness Stakes, at Pimlico. The 3-year-old colt covered the 1[3/16] miles in 1:53[4/5]—the third-fastest time in Preakness history—and earned $438,230 (page 16).
INDOOR SOCCER—Defending champion San Diego advanced to the finals of the MISL playoffs, but only after surviving a back-and-forth, seven-game semifinal series against Dallas. The week's action began with the series tied at two games. The Sidekicks, led by midfielder Mark Karpun's two goals—both in the third period—won at home by a score of 4-1 to go ahead for the first time in the series and push the Sockers to the brink of elimination. But with the remaining two games scheduled for San Diego, where the Sockers had a 7-0 record in last-chance playoff matches, the series was far from over. In Game 6, San Diego ran the string to eight, as it got two goals apiece from Branko Segota, Waad Hirmez and Steve Zungul, and one from Kevin Crow to triumph 7-2. In Game 7, played before a crowd of 11,604, the Sockers scored just once—on a power-play goal by midfielder Segota at the end of the third period—but that was enough. San Diego goalie Victor Nogueira got the fifth shutout in MISL playoff history, and the Sockers won 1-0. In the other semifinal, Baltimore, trailing 4-3 early in the final quarter of Game 2, rallied with three unanswered goals and beat Wichita 6-4 to give the Blast a two-games-to-none series lead. Game 3 was a repeat, as Baltimore, paced by forward Domenic Mobilio's two goals, won 6-4. The Wings, led by midfielder Chico Borja's three goals, avoided a four-game sweep by winning the next game, 6-3.
MOTOR SPORTS—RUSTY WALLACE, driving a Pontiac, held off Ken Schrader by .23 of a second to win a NASCAR all-star event in Concord, N.C. Wallace, who earned $200,000 for the victory, averaged 133.15 mph for 135 laps of the 1.5-mile Charlotte Motor Speedway oval.
TENNIS—IVAN LENDL beat Horst Skoff 6-4, 6-1, 6-3 to win the rain-delayed German Open and $135,000, in Hamburg.
Alberto Mancini outlasted Andre Agassi 6-3, 4-6, 2-6, 7-6, 6-1 to win the Italian Open, in Rome. He earned $179,200.
Steffi Graf defeated Gabriela Sabatini 6-3, 6-1 to win the German Open and $60,000, in Berlin.
Sandra Birch of Stanford beat Jennifer Santrock of SMU 6-3, 6-3 to win the NCAA women's singles championship, in Gainesville, Fla.
MILEPOSTS—BANNED: "Permanently" by the NFL for drug abuse, Cincinnati running back STANLEY WILSON, 27. Wilson, who was suspended in 1985 and '87 for violating the league's substance-abuse policy, was found with cocaine in his hotel room the night before this year's Super Bowl and was ruled ineligible for the game.
FIRED: As manager of the Toronto Blue Jays, JIMY WILLIAMS, 45, who led the Jays to a 269-217 record over the past three seasons but was 12-24 so far this year. He was replaced on an interim basis by Toronto batting coach CITO GASTON, 45.
As coach of the Hartford Whalers, LARRY PLEAU, 42, who last season guided Hartford to a 37-38-5 record and fourth place in the Adams Division.
NAMED: As coach of the Boston Bruins, MIKE MILBURY, 36, who for the past two years was coach and general manager of the Maine Mariners in the American Hockey League.
PLACED ON PROBATION: For three years by the NCAA, the University of Kentucky basketball program, for 15 recruiting and other violations (page 24).