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Playing with Matches
August 09, 1999
Tiger Woods's Showdown at Sherwood with David Duval on Monday continued a tradition of dubious duels from Aaron Burr vs. Alexander Hamilton in 1804 to Muhammad Ali's 1976 draw with Japanese wrestler Antonio Inoki (above). Here are four other trash-sport classics, plus two more matches that might strike sparks.
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August 09, 1999

Playing With Matches

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Tiger Woods's Showdown at Sherwood with David Duval on Monday continued a tradition of dubious duels from Aaron Burr vs. Alexander Hamilton in 1804 to Muhammad Ali's 1976 draw with Japanese wrestler Antonio Inoki (above). Here are four other trash-sport classics, plus two more matches that might strike sparks.

JESSE OWENS VS. JULIO MCCAW

Christmas Dash, Havana, 1936
The world's fastest man edged a racehorse with a human-sounding name in a 100-yard dash. Owens's unofficial time of 9.9 seconds surpassed his world record by .03. Asked why he'd race a horse for $2,000, the Olympic hero would say, "I had four gold medals, but you can't eat four gold medals."

JIM BROWN VS. FRANCO HARRIS

I Challenge You!, Atlantic City, 1985
In a nationally televised four-event tussle at the Tropicana, the 48-year-old Brown beat Harris, 34, at hoops and racquetball, but Franco prevailed in a pass-catching contest quarterbacked by Phil Simms, then outran Brown in a 40-yard dash. The two split prizes worth $100,000.

KAREEM ABDUL-JABBAR VS. JULIUS ERVING

Clash of the Legends, Atlantic City, 1992
Abdul-Jabbar, 44, routed the 42-year-old Erving 41-23 in a pay-per-view spectacle that drew 4,200 fans to the Trump Taj Mahal. While Kareem went 16 for 31 from the field, the Doctor shot a sickly 9 for 44 and jammed just once. "There will be no rematch," said Erving.

GARRY KASPAROV VS. DEEP BLUE

Man vs. Machine, New York City, 1997
The win by IBM's chess-playing computer, which Kasparov had beaten in '96, left the world champ in a blue mood. "My opponent was psychologically stable, undisturbed and unconcerned about anything going on around it," said the humbled human. " IBM owes me, and all mankind, a rematch."

TIM DUNCAN VS. KEVIN GARNETT

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