SI Vault
The Week in TV Sports
John Walters
April 20, 1998
Sunday 4/19
Decrease font Decrease font
Enlarge font Enlarge font
April 20, 1998

The Week In Tv Sports

View CoverRead All Articles View This Issue

Sunday 4/19

Jazz at Lakers
Go ahead and trade names already! Los Angeles Jazz. Salt Lakers. It just makes sense. At week's end we didn't know whether today's regular-season finale at the Forum would have a bearing on the win, place and show in the Western Conference race that Utah (59-19), the Seattle Super-Sonics (59-20) and Los Angeles (57-21) had been running the last six weeks. Or if Utah's Karl Malone (26.9 points per game) would still have a chance to overtake the Lakers' Shaquille O'Neal (27.9) as the West's leading scorer. Don't be surprised if the ever outspoken Malone exchanges words with L.A.'s teenage sixth man, Kobe Bryant (left), who dissed the Mailman at February's All-Star Game by shunning a pick that the reigning MVP attempted to set. Hey, Kobe, how do you think John Stockton became the league's alltime assists leader?
? NBC, 3:30 PM

Taped last August and distilled into a three-night, five-hour telecast, this treacherous 335-mile odyssey across three ecosystems (outback, rain forest, ocean)takes place in and alongside the rugged wilderness of Queensland, Australia. Against a landscape replete with myriad dangers—poisonous snakes and spiders, scorpions, crocs and the media—48 four-person teams (such as France's Team ARS, below) from 15 nations test their resolve while trekking, biking, canyoneering, canoeing, kayaking, rafting and horseback riding.

Monday 4/20

Boston Marathon
Although he didn't live to see its inaugural running in 1897, New Englander Henry David Thoreau would have understood this race better than most. The swiftest traveler, Thoreau wrote, is he that goes afoot. More than 12,000 swift travelers will run from Hopkinton to downtown Boylston Street. Among the men, chances are the swiftest, for the eighth straight year, will be a Kenyan. Although 1997 winner Lameck Aguta will not run (he's recovering from injuries suffered in an auto accident), '96 champ Moses Tanui and three-time champ Cosmas Ndeti will.
? ESPN2, 11:30 AM

Replay: The History of the NFL on TV
This comprehensive 90-minute special, hosted by Frank Gifford and Joe Namath, gang-tackles almost all the highland lowlights of the mutually profitable relationship between pro football and the tube: Heidi. Dandy Don. Brent, Phyllis and Irv ("the Mod Squad of television sports," Ms. George recalls in one of several entertaining interviews). The Ice Bowl. The Fog Bowl. (One notable omission: the Immaculate Reception.) "In this age of sitcoms and dramas, football is the ultimate [TV] reality," says Fox Sports president David Hill. Has he not seen his own network's World's Scariest Police Chases'?
? ESPN, 8:30 PM

Thursday 4/23
Padres at Cubs
A scene from Chicago's dramatic April 3 home opener, in which Chip Caray replaced his late grandpa, Harry, as Cubs play-by-play announcer: Top of the seventh, two outs. The Wrigley throng is standing in anticipation of Caray's widow, Dutchie, singing Take Me Out to the Ballgame. Concedes Chip, "I've never been this nervous in all my life." The crowd erupts as a fly ball is lofted to right-field, where Sammy Sosa...drops it. Chip will be more relaxed today, when another Chi-town celeb will lead the seventh-inning chorus. On the field the Cubs (8-4 through Sunday) and Padres (10-2) have been paced in the early going by their hot-hitting first basemen: Chicago's Mark Grace (left, .391) and San Diego's Wally Joyner (.389).
?WGN, 2 PM