Sports Calendar

By , Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor

November 1

National Basketball Association season begins

Break out the party hats and retro uniforms; the NBA celebrates its silver anniversary. Fifty years to the day that the first game was played in Toronto, the league will create a little dja vu when the Toronto Raptors host the New York Knicks. The teams will wear old-style uniforms throughout the 82-game regular season. Michael Jordan will attempt to lead the Chicago Bulls to another championship while Houston has acquired Charles Barkley in an effort to regain the crown it lost last year. Meanwhile the Los Angeles Lakers made waves by acquiring Shaquille O'Neal from Orlando.

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November 3

New York City Marathon

Kenya's Tegla Loroupe, who became the first African woman to win a major marathon when she stormed New York in 1994, will be back looking for a "three-peat." Mexico's German Silva, the men's winner two years running, is not scheduled to compete.

United States vs. Guatemala (soccer)

Playing in Washington, the US men's team will enjoy the home-field advantage in its first World Cup qualifying match for the 1998 tournament in France.

November 4-10

Senior (PGA) Tour Championship (men's golf)

The 50-and-over set enjoys a full calender of tournaments and a large following, thanks to the high-caliber of play and such stars as Jack Nicklaus, Lee Trevino, and Ray Floyd. This year lesser-known tour leader Jim Colbert is trying to hold off Hale Irwin in a tightly contested race for year-long honors. They'll battle it out with a field of 29 other golfers in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

November10

NAPA 500 (auto racing)

The final race of a long NASCAR season could be a beaut, with Terry Labonte, Jeff Gordon, Dale Jarrett, and Dale Earnhardt vying for stock car supremacy in Atlanta.

Nov. 11-14

Major-league baseball awards announced

The Baseball Writers Association of America completes its annual presentation of postseason hardware by naming the Cy Young Award-winning pitchers and Most Valuable Players. Atlanta's John Smoltz and the Yankees' Andy Pettite are probably the leading Cy Young candidates, but it's anybody's guess who may emerge in the MVP balloting.

November 18

Green Bay vs. Dallas (pro football)

In a National Football League season marked by too many nondescript contests, here's a game with genuine fan appeal: a Monday night rematch between last year's National Conference championship game opponents.

Nov. 18-24

Women's and men's tennis tour 1996 finales

A select group of top-ranked athletes are playing an ocean apart. In Hannover, Germany, Boris Becker, who won last year's ATP Tour World Championship tournament in Frankfurt, will again play before his countrymen. In New York, Kimiko Date, the first Japanese woman to reach the semifinals at Wimbledon, will retire at the conclusion of the WTA Tour Championship event.

November 29-December 1

Davis Cup final (men's tennis)

Sweden seeks its fifth team title since 1984 when it hosts France. The French scored a stirring come-from-behind victory over Italy to reach the final.

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