The Boston Globe from Boston, Massachusetts on March 21, 1972 · 25
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The Boston Globe from Boston, Massachusetts · 25

Boston, Massachusetts
Issue Date:
Tuesday, March 21, 1972
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SPORTS The Boston Globe Tuesday, March 21, 1S72 n i - 4Tlie best of my career to help my people' The fight Joe Louis asked for in 1941 HHWTTrri-fHlMHHffln-Hm!fltllllf HiilftfflMlfflllflrtn; MIII'HITiWilliroillfflill III -wjtfjy--ff-aMft JOE LOUIS letter to the mayor Associated Press , - ; NASHUA, . N.H. " , In 1941, then-heavyweight boxing champion Joe Louis told the mayor of Nashua he would like to do one last thing before entering the armed services stage a fight for the benefit of his people. Mayor Dennis J. Sullivan says he found a letter mailed to Nashua's chief executive by Louis from Greenwood Lake, N.Y., on Sept. 17, 1941. It read: "I have been reclassified by the Selec tive. Draft Board, and I expect to be called into the service of my country. This . may cause me to retire from the ring. "But before I retire, I want to put up one more fight the best of my career to help my people. "The hardest fight I ever had was against prejudice and intolerance. My people know what I mean. They are all fighting their way up, and I want to open the door of opportunity a little wider for them. The fight I propose to make will not be staged in an arena against one particular opponent, but out in the open across the country. "If I could get a 'gate' as big as I've ever seen in the Yankee Stadium and turn it over to the Department of Race Relations of the Federal Council of the Churches of Christ in America for the splendid work that department is doing on behalf of the Negro people and better relations with their white neighbors, I'd feel like a real champion. "I propose to start the 'gate' with my own contribution, and I want you to subscribe for a box, a ringside seat or other reservation. This is one purse which , does not have to be shared with pro moters or managers. Every cent will be--used to better the condition of my people in creating better human relations ' in America. "Will you cooperate by sending your check or money order, in any amount, payable to Frank H. Mann, treasurer, and mail it today? If you help me this, time I'll feel that I've won the greatest fight of my, life." LEIGH MONTVILLE Bell rings loud and clear for Barnstable Small Vataha grows on you He probably will be too short to receive his college degree. Everybody says so. "That's right," Randy Vataha said last night. "When I go up to get it, the president of the school won't be able to bend that low or something. I won't get my college degree because I'm too short." The Patriots' wide receiver, 5-9 and no longer growing laughed at his own small joke. Too short? Of course, but the pas was past and the tests already had been proved. Randy Vataha was alive and short in Hingham at the South Shore Country Club, receiving the Johnny Unitas Award for someone "whose entry into professional football was without fanfare and whose assignment to the squad was a result of his own determined efforts and whose contributions to his team have been most significant." The records were in the book 51 receptions, nine touchdowns and 872 yards gained. The games were on film the seven catches against the Cowboys, the seven against the Dolphins, the big 88-yarder to polish off the Baltimore Colts in the New England Patriots season finale. Too short? Of course ... but Randy Vataha was back and will be back and is expected to be a profes-1 sional football figure for some years to follow. Even he believes it, "I only started to believe it last week," he said, then shaking his head. "No, really, it was a gradual thing. It was true that I didn't do my laundry for a few weeks because I was worried I would be sent home, but each week 1 started to believe in myself a little bit more. The story as with Unitas's story and the stories of two previous award winners, Detroit placekicker Errol Mann and Packers' safety Willie Wood-is strictly from 1111111,111 - -m ii 5 f ygggWFJt- . '1 iifw"M''M"''i'r,'t Mgwlw"7 f 'Jw jTTWr ,L 1 ' . . . V V. 1 if 3 .C Barnstable High's Alan Bell fires the puck past goalie Ron Robinson of Amherst Regional High in Division II state championship game. Three Barnstable players scored hat tricks as the Cape Cod school rolled to an 11-2 victory in the first half of the Boston Garden doubleheader. (Globe photo by Frank O'Brien) C ashman, Hextall on carpet . 11 VA ehnwc un alrrndv hav some uorauo Aiger kiw.v.. .. -r . iinmoHmtp trm home. Kla ing Been cui once, eyc ....... - - runs 40-yard dash, coach nudges other coach with surprise at time. Kid catches football. Kid becomes, as jou $ay, "household word." "I cKn't give you odds on it happening," Pats coach John Mazur said. "I don't look at players like that. I try them out and see what they can do. "It Is true, though, that a kid who coms in as a free cent, without a good contract, has to prove himself. There ARE things a top draft choice can do and be excused for. There AREN'T things that a free agent can do." "An Important thing is speed," Wood, back to pre-nent the award, said." If you come in and show you have speed you are a lot better off than if you don't have it. "I wasn't particularly fast and I was small, 165 pounds, when I showed up with the Packers. I was quick, though, and I was lucky that Vince (Lombardi) was only in his second year there. Because of that, I think he was looking at people a lot closer than anyone normally would." Wood made it, lasting for 12 pro seasons and a pocketful of NFL titles end a successful start toward life. Valsha has made at least the first plateau. Now he is trying to sport out what it all means. When last seen In New England he was leaving the Christmas shopping bag full of autographed team foot-r' locker room in Foxboro with a Jordan Marsh balls .... "Since then, I've gotten married and been traveling." he said, hi wife, Debbie, s itting at nearby table. "A lot of kiing. Lake Tahoc. I'm goinj; to go back to school (Stanford) next week. I haven't looked at the catalogue in about two years, but I think I'll have enough credit! to graduate." Foothxll has been another world. It has ben a world that will be jumped inlo again in the fall, like the neighborhood YMCA pool. ' "It'i been good, being away from it," he said. "I haven't seen many pwple to remind me about it. Only when I'm here, back Eat, does it come back, people coming up to me and talking about football." To help with the remembering lact night, Vataha brought along the higher-paid, more-publicized end of his football combination. Jim Plunkett. the quarterback, the entree inlo the football world for Randy Vataha, made it a threesome Vataha, wife and quarterback on the Bight east. Wood made a speech. Plunkctt bowed, Mazur made a tpeech, Vataha made a pcech. When it was over, Mazur confronted his two people. lit mentioned a two-day veterans' camp on April 22-23. "Well, then, it'll be helpful if you could send me a for,ibll," Plunkrtt said. "In fact, could you make it two lootba'ls? You could send them to rny home." Randy aVtaha? He didn't fay anything. Footballs? Why ask? He couldn't receive them anyway. Too short The postman couldn't bend Jow enVfUgh. to give, thcra to Jtm. Cf course. Everybody aajs so.t Associated Press MINNEAPOLIS Dennis Hextall of the Minnesota North Stars and Wayne Cashman of the Bruins have been summoned to a meeting with National Hockey League President Clarence Campbell, to face possible disciplinary action for a stick-swinging incident, A North Stars spokesman said Hextall and Minnesota General Manager Wren Blair left for Montreal last night, for a 10 a.m. meeting today with CampbelL Cashman and Bruins General Manager Milt Schmidt were also summoned. Bill Friday, the referee in Sunday's Boston-Minnesota game, are expected to attend the meeting also. The clash between Cashman and Hextall occurred near the end of the second period of a nationally televised game at the Boston Garden Sunday, which the Bruins won 7-3. Blair reminded Campbell that the timing of the meeting would prevent Hextall from playing tonight at home against the California Seals. "Don't worry about that," Campbell was quoted as saying. "Hextall won't be playing in that one anyway." Scott Morrison, NHL refcree-in-chicf, has reviewed television films of the incidant. A replay showed that Cashman slashed at Hextall's ankles on two spearate occasions after the Minnesota for ward had picked up a loose puck in his own end and headed for the Boston goal. After losing the puck, Hextall retaliated against Cashman with a spearing motion of his stick that narrowly missed the Boston player's head. That gesture apparetly prompted sonce og the Bruins to confront Hextall behind the Boston net. Cashman leaped into the crowd of players and brought his stick down toward Hextall's head. But Hextall moved and the blow appeared to strike him on the shoulder. Friday assessed Cashman two minor penalties and Hextall received a five-minute major for spearing. The latter carries a $50 fine. Campbell hinted yesterday that league action may follow. The referee's action does not deprive me of taking further action," the NHL president said. .-""; 'I ARTHUR GOLDBERG Goldberg blasts reserve clause "The reserve clause violates the US anti-trust laws, and it violates the 13th Amendment, which prohibits slavery," former Justice Arthur Goldberg told the Supreme Court yesterday as the court heard Curt Flood's suit asainst organized bahcball. Story, Page 27. Norwood adds '2. i i-, 1l itate title, 3-1 By Kevin Walsh, Globe Staff It was supposed to be another easy victory for the East last night at Boston Garden, but it took a sensational late-game spurt by Mike Martin to carry undefeated . Norwood to a 3-1 victory over surprising St. John's of Shrewsbury for the Division I championship of the State Hockey Tournament. Earlier in the day, Barnstable became the first Divi- ' sion II champion in history as it bombed Amherst, 11-2, ' as the combined attraction drew 9864. ' "That team (St. John's) hustled. They weren't that bad," insisted Norwood coach Don Wheeler who had to recharge his team after battling to the Eastern Massachusetts title the previous Monday night. "We didn't play well for two periods and then we came out and won it on guts in the third period. "They tried to intimidate us. We took some pretty 1 tough shots. But that was the worst thing they could have done. They made us mad and we went out and took the game. I "It was tough to come back for this game after the J" win nvpr A t-1 i n nf tin T Ui.. ri I i i -1 .. ... ik w a a imiu hj gcL me team up, WIUlc ' for St. John's the game was the whole world." The Western Mass. champion gave the Norwood club, which finished with a 23-0 record, all it could handle. It took a sensational individual effort by All-Scholastic center Martin to pull it out. Martin scored the winning goal and set up an insur- ' ance marker in the final three minutes after coming back from a shoulder injury in the opening seconds of the third period. Norwood had jumped off to a !-0 lead in the first period on a goal off the stick of third-liner Ed McQuaid. St. John's, a fourth-place finisher in the Central Mass. League during the regular season, evened the count late in the second period when the puck deflected up in the air off goaltender Bill Pieri's stick and Mark ' Farley was positioned perfectly in front to bait it in. It was anybody's game with time running out when John Bertrand went into the penalty box for cross check- ing and the Norwood power play clicked. Ed King and Bill Clifford controlled the puck with a rebound finally coming out to Martin in the slot. He quickly flicked a snap shot low to sophomore goaltender Jim Stuart's stick side. It was Martin again with less than two minutes remaining. This time he came up. with the puck along the right boards and made a perfect centering pass to King breaking for the net. The big left winger fired a wrist shot into the St. John's net from 15 feet out. . The Western Massachusetts champions battled through the first period pulling ahead, 2-1, on a goal by Pete Piepul. But the Cape champions, who finished the season with a 20-0 record, pulled even on the first of Bob Smith's three goals at the 11:17 mark. In the second period it was all downhill for Amherst as Barnstable scored four times in the first six minutes, led by Smith again who accounted for the final two goals during the four-goal explosion. It was more of the same over the final 12 minutes as the Cape Codders just overpowered the visitors to be- . come the first Division II champion in history. The victory was accomplished without, the services of Eastern Mass. all-tournament goaltender Jeff Sol lows who was at the Garden on crutches after injuring his rijiht ankle last Thursday when he slipped coming out of the whirlpool and pulled a tendon. But sophomore Jim Johnson stepped in and did a steady job. Esposito's genius revolutionizing hockey By Will McDonough, Globe Staff It's obvious now, that Phil Esposito has brought a new dimension to hockey, and perhaps will change the future of his game much the same way Bill Russell did in basketball. Who were the great goal scorers in hockey before Esposito came along? Well, there are four other men who have scored more than 50 goals and they all have one thing in common they played wing. Thfse men, Rocket Richard, licrnie Geoffrion, Bobby Hull and Johmiy Bucyk, did not play center as Esposilo doe. "Before Phil," says his coach, Tom Johnson, "the center was a playmaker. That was his main Job. Now he's changed that. I've never seen anyone in hockey before do what Esposito does now in front of that net." In the first 53 years of what is known as the "modern" NHL, no one scored as many as 60 goals In a sea mm. Then, in the pant two years, while he was showing that center icemen could be the most dangerous scorers of all, Esposito drilled home 73 goals a year ago, and has another 62 already this year, "I guess, I first kaintd what could be done from in front from playing with Bobby Hull in Chicago when I first came in'o the league," said Esposito yesterday, bo-fore a brief skating workout at the Cardtrijo break in a pair M skates. . ' "I saw what he could do by working mound the slot and getting his shots away wi'h gr ?t speed." Yet, the 'siot center,' as Esposito should be called, wasn't developed until the last couple of years. "I really couldn't do it the firt couple of years 1 came to Boston. You need to have the kind of wings thdt c;m get the puck out of the corner for you. And this is what has happened with (Kenny) Hidce and (Wayne) Cah- ' man. If I had to go in ti e corner myself and get the puik I certainly couldn't be in portion to stoic." Despite the fact that he needs a couple of big aggressive forwards to do the heavy work for him. Keposito hm quickly developed a science with his new style of play. "As we started to get Into this kind of play I started to think more about it. I thought about all the different situations and what could be done." No one, say people who have been around the league for years, has ever tried to play center like Esposito has. Therefore, every facet of his game had to come from trial and error as he personally discovcicd what would work. "You have to keep adjust mf." . Johnson. ' Phil ,as the ability to do this They've tried diffeionl ways of slopping him ftd he adjusts." Perhaps because he, many time, makes it srrm so effortless, tans lake Efposito's work in front for gi anted. Yet the big guy ialways plotting and pUnning trying to stay one step ahead of the enemy every goaltender in the league. Tin trying to develop a richthandod shot," said Esposito. "I've shot righthanded a couple of times and got real good wood on one of them. It might have gone in if it hadn't hit the defensenian. "I'm alfo shooting the I ve done t efot e. I find standing up for me when Just let it go. Wouldn't it stopper. I don't think I hav "Here's a guy who than anyone in history." would get a bigger thrill banded." slapohot from farther out than now that the defenscman are I'm coming across the line so I be something if I scored on a e before." scores goals lefthanded better says Johnson, "and I think he out of just scoring one right- "If I can develop a good shot righthandrd, said Esposito, "then it will be just one more thing the goalie ha to think about. doem't have to be a great shot. It just ha to be to a g'x,d shot and it will be effective." r.Rl'INS NOTES Eddie Johnston, bothered and tirfd from a t event bout with the flu, visited the doctor eU-iday afternoon to have an ear problem corrected. . . . "I'd like to get Fddie and Teddy Green more ict time before the playoff" said Tom Johnson . . . does it seem possible that Bobby Oir is 21 already? His birthday was Jtsterdd)'. J

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