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Tunney’s Retirement Nearly Lost in Shuffle

TIMES STAFF WRITER

The guys working The Times’ night sports desk 71 years ago tonight scarcely knew where to begin.

That day’s top sports stories:

* Los Angeles was officially awarded the 1932 Olympics.

* Heavyweight boxing champion Gene Tunney announced his retirement.

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* Lillian Copeland of Pasadena won the silver medal in the discus at the Amsterdam Olympics.

* USC announced that tickets for the best seats at the Dec. 1 game against Notre Dame at the Coliseum would increase $2, to $5.

* USC sprinter Charles Paddock, at the Amsterdam Olympics, had qualified for the 200-meter semifinals.

Paddock wound up atop the sports page, with a banner headline, an indication of how big track and field once was in this town. The $5 USC-Notre Dame ticket story got No. 2 play. Tunney was a one-column story above the fold, as was Copeland. Los Angeles’ being awarded the 1932 Olympics was below the fold, since most had assumed for months it would happen.

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Tunney had defended his championship for the second time only four days earlier, an 11th-round knockout of Tom Heeney in New York.

Tunney had upset champion Jack Dempsey in a driving rain before 100,000 at Philadelphia in 1926 to win the title, then beat Dempsey again a year later in Chicago. His share of the purse in the rematch came to $990,000 so he wrote a $10,000 check to promoter Tex Rickard, who in turn wrote one to him for $1 million.

*

Also on this date: In 1957, the attraction of Downey High’s Randy Meadows and Anaheim’s Mickey Flynn in the same backfield drew 85,931 to the Coliseum for the North-South Shrine All-Star game. The two prep superstar running backs flopped, gaining a combined nine yards. . . . In 1954, Milwaukee’s Joe Adcock hit four home runs and a double against the Dodgers in Brooklyn. . . . In 1932, 80,184 turned out in Cleveland as Philadelphia’s Lefty Grove beat the Indians, 1-0, in the first game at $2.64-million Municipal Stadium. . . . In 1976, at the Montreal Olympics, U.S. boxers Michael and Leon Spinks, Sugar Ray Leonard, Leo Randolph and Howard Davis won gold medals. . . . In 1932, at the Los Angeles Olympics, Babe Didrikson broke the women’s world javelin record by 11 feet on her first throw, winning the Olympic gold medal.

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