Thu, Nov 11, 2004 - Page 19 News List

Sports Briefs

AGENCIES

■ BoxingTarver, Johnson date set

Antonio Tarver and Glen Johnson will relinquish their light heavyweight titles to fight each other in a matchup of top light heavyweights. Tarver and Johnson will meet Dec. 18 in a 12-round bout at Staples Center without any light heavyweight crowns on the line. The WBC stripped Tarver of his championship belt for not agreeing to fight mandatory challenger Paul Briggs of Australia. Jamaican-born Johnson decided to relinquish the IBF version rather than fight that organization's top challenger, Rico Hoye. "It wasn't that they refused to fight their mandatory challengers," promoter Joe DeGuardia said. "It was a matter that they wanted to meet each other in order to make the best bout available, the most compelling bout, the bout everybody, including these two fighters want to see." Unfortunately, in order to accomplish all this, they had to relinquish their titles.

■ Football

Fox and CBS keep games

The NFL agreed to contract extensions with Fox and CBS to televise Sunday afternoon games for six more years, deals worth a combined US$8 billion. The current contract, which expires after the 2005 season, was worth US$17.2 billion, including the Sunday night and Monday night packages with ESPN and ABC. The extensions will run through 2011. The league still is in negotiations for the prime-time packages. CBS continues to televise AFC games, a package it acquired in 1998. CBS handled NFL games from 1956 through the 1970 merger, then took over the NFC until 1993, when Fox outbid CBS for that package. CBS then outbid NBC for the AFC games.

■ Golf

Big names sign up

Two of Europe's Ryder Cup stars -- Scotland's Colin Montgomerie and England's Lee Westwood -- will headline January's Caltex Masters golf tournament in Singapore, organizers said. Montgomerie, a seven-time European Order of Merit winner, is the defending champion at the US$1 million tournament. He was also a member of the victorious European team that beat the US by a record margin in the Ryder Cup this year. Among those spearheading the Asian challenge are Thailand's Thongchai Jaidee, the leading money winner on the Asian Tour, and China's Zhang Lian-wei, who won here in 2003 by beating South Africa's Ernie Els, tournament organizers said. Westwood meanwhile, is a frequent visitor to the region with 25 wins worldwide. The tournament is one of the first stops on the 2005 season and is jointly sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours.

■ Basketball

Sorry -- wrong number

Charlotte Bobcats fans were in for a surprise if they dialed an NBA ticket number listed in a local phone book: Instead of getting seats, they were told to call a sex chat line. The correct number -- (800) 4NBA-TIX -- was established by the league three years ago for tickets in any city, and it was listed correctly in the 2002-2003 BellSouth White Pages, back when the city had the Hornets. But the number in this year's BellSouth book, released in September, lists a wrong toll-free number that refers callers to the sex line. BellSouth and Bobcats officials said they learned of the glitch last Thursday. "We certainly apologize to any of our fans who have been inconvenienced by this," said Chris Weiller, a team spokesman.

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