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SPORTS TODAY

Buster musters bluster for Tokyo bout with Tyson

James "Buster" Douglas, opening training in Tokyo for his challenge against Mike Tyson, either has a load of confidence or was trying to build some Sunday as he said he would "make history" by winning the world heavyweight championship.

He told reporters, "I will make history in Japan. I will win either a decision or a knockout. I will be the winner and there is no doubt about it."

Tyson, meanwhile, visited the Tokyo Sports Center for the Handicapped and autographed T-shirts.

The champion arrived 11 days ago for his Feb. 11 fight against Douglas in the Tokyo Dome.

Douglas still was suffering Sunday from jet lag, and will wait a few days before starting sparring, his chief trainer, T.D. McCauley, said.

In Atlantic City, N.J., John Molina retained his International Boxing Federation junior lightweight title by flooring Lupe Suarez twice in the first round and stopping him at 2:43 of the sixth round of a scheduled 12-round bout.

USGA reaches settlement with makers of Ping club

The United States Golf Association agreed in an out-of-court settlement to recognize the Ping Eye-2 square-grooved club, and the manufacturer agreed to stop making it.

Karsten Manufacturing Corp. had sued the USGA for $100 million after the USGA refused to recognize the U-grooved clubs, which differ from the traditional V-grooved clubs.

"The USGA will pretend they are legal and Karsten will stop making them," USGA spokesman Rich Skyzinski said.

The settlement effects USGA events such as the U.S. Open but not the PGA Tour. The company, which has sold about two million sets of the clubs, obtained a federal court injunction allowing the clubs to be used in PGA tournaments. The PGA Tour has appealed to the 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco.

Karsten vice-president John Solheim said the company will continue to make clubs with the U-shaped grooves, but will make technical alterations that will bring the clubs within USGA specifications.

Wind pushes UK's Christie within hair of Lewis' record

Olympic silver medalist Linford Christie of England fired an early-season warning to his rivals by winning the 100 meters at the Commonwealth Games in Auckland, New Zealand in a wind-aided 9.93 seconds -- a 100th of a second off Carl Lewis' world record. The time will not be recognized officially, though, because of a tail wind of 3.83 meters per second, almost twice above the accepted limit. But the Englishman was still delighted with his effort.

"I'm really pleased," Christie said after bettering his semifinal time of 10.02. "I've been training really hard. The crowd here is absolutely brilliant. Everything was on my side."

Tired of losing, Casillas wants out of Atlanta

Nose tackle Tony Casillas, who went from a national championship at Oklahoma to futility with the Atlanta Falcons, says he is tired of losing and wants out of Atlanta.

Casillas expects Atlanta to make him one of the 37 players it protects from free agency this year. He said if he is not traded, then he is prepared to hold out.

Elsewhere, Marc Spindler, a 6-5, 290-pound defensive tackle from Pittsburgh, may skip his final year of college football and turn pro.

Spindler, reportedly angered at the recent Pitt firings of coach Mike Gottfried and defensive line coach Frank D'Alonzo, reportedly is ready to bypass the coming season in favor of the NFL. Spindler is a likely first-round draft choice.

Celtics win eighth straight Super Sunday victory

When Boston's Kevin McHale hit a three-point field goal, the Phoenix Suns should have known they were in trouble.

McHale ignited a 16-2 run with the second three-pointer of his career at the end of the first quarter Sunday and the Celtics went on to beat the Suns, 126-118.

"When the Celtics play like that, they're almost impossible to beat," said the Suns' Kevin Johnson, who had 28 points. "If they're an up-and-down team, they were certainly up today.

"One way to stop our break is to shoot a good field-goal percentage, and the Celtics did that."

It was Boston's eighth straight Super Bowl Sunday victory.

Larry Bird scored 22 points, McHale 21, Robert Parish 17 and Reggie Lewis 16 as Boston handed Phoenix its second consecutive loss after the Suns' club-record, 10-game winning streak. The Suns' Tom Chambers led all scorers with 40 points.

Around & About

Swiss skier Steve Locher edged Armand Schiele of France by a mere .03 seconds today to win a World Cup super giant slalom in Val D'Isere, France. Locher sped down the course to finish with a time of 1:32.13 minutes, edging Schiele at 1:32.16 and third-place Guenther Mader of Austria at 1:32.37. In a downhill competition earlier in the day, Austrian Helmut Hoeflehner powered to his second World Cup downhill victory in three days, beating William Besse of Switzerland. Hoeflehner, 30, finished with a time of 1:58.09, ahead of Besse at 1:58.93 and Franz Heinzer of Switzerland in third place with 1.59.24. . . . Ken Schrader, the two-time defending Daytona 500 pole winner, closed out nearly two months of off-season testing at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway with a lap of 195.101, the fastest lap of the winter. Also going above 195 at the 2 1/2 -mile oval were defending Daytona 500 champion Darrell Waltrip at 195.059 and Dale Earnhardt and Derrike Cope, who both ran 195.016. The four fastest drivers were in Chevrolet Luminas.

CAGE CALENDAR

Canisius will be without center Ed Book when it meets St. Peter's in a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference game at 7:35 tonight (WBEN) at the Koessler Center.

Book suffered torn ligaments in his left ankle in Saturday night's 75-72 loss at Niagara and will be out a minimum of three weeks.

Canisius is 4-13 overall, 1-7 in the MAAC. St. Peter's is 10-6, 3-2.

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