On this date: 1978 — Muhammad Ali loses title to Leon Spinks on split decision
1932 — Eddie Eagen, as a member of the four-man U.S. bobsled team, wins a gold medal at the Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, New York. He previously won a gold medal in boxing as a light heavyweight at the 1920 Summer Games in Antwerp, Belgium.
1936 — Sonja Henie of Norway, wins her third consecutive Olympic figure skating gold medal.
1952 — Emmett Ashford becomes the first black umpire in organized baseball when he signs to work in the class-C Southwest International League. He later serves as a major league umpire for the American League from 1966 to 1970.
1953 — Tenley Albright becomes the first American woman to win a world figure skating title by beating Germany's Gundi Busch at the World Championships in Davos, Switzerland.
1964 — Ken Hubbs, the 22-year-old Chicago Cubs second baseman, dies when his private plane crashes in Utah. The 1962 NL Rookie of the Year had his pilot's license for two weeks and was flying in bad weather.
1974 — Boston's Phil Esposito scores his 1,000th point with an assist in the Bruins' 4-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks.
1975 — Yvan Cournoyer of the Montreal Canadiens scores five goals and gets two assists in a 12-3 win over the Chicago Blackhawks.
1978 — Leon Spinks wins a 15-round split decision over Muhammad Ali to take the world heavyweight title at Las Vegas.
1980 — Rookie Wayne Gretzky ties the NHL record with seven assists in a game and sets a scoring record for first-year players in Edmonton's 8-2 victory over the Washington Capitals.
1989 — Golden State picks up 25 steals against San Antonio in a 133-96 win at the Oakland Coliseum. That ties the NBA record originally set by the Warriors on March 25, 1975, in a 139-122 home win over the Los Angeles Lakers.
1994 — Kentucky makes one of the greatest comebacks in college basketball history with a 99-95 victory over LSU after trailing by 31 points with 15:30 to play.
1994 — Freshman Ila Borders becomes the first woman to pitch in an NCAA or NAIA game. The left-hander pitches a complete-game for Southern California College, allowing five hits in the Vanguards' 12-1 win over Claremont-Mudd.
1995 — Charlie Standish sets a PBA record by rolling three perfect games in the first round of the Peoria Open bowling tournament. Standish rolls 300s in the second, fourth and sixth games of the six-game round and at one point has 23 consecutive strikes.
1998 — Dale Earnhardt takes the Daytona 500 on his 20th try and ends a 59-race winless streak on the day NASCAR begins celebrating its 50th anniversary.
2002 — The worst judging scandal in Winter Olympics history is resolved, with Canadian pairs figure skaters Jamie Sale and David Pelletier declared co-gold medalists with the Russian winners.
2004 — Dale Earnhardt Jr. barrels past Tony Stewart to win the Daytona 500 on the same track that claimed his father's life three years ago. Junior wins this race in his fifth try, the same race that bedeviled his later father for 19 years.
2007 — Joe Sakic scores twice, including his 600th career goal, and adds three assists and Milan Hejduk has three goals to lead Colorado to a 7-5 win at Calgary.
2009 — Yelena Isinbayeva breaks her own indoor world pole vault record, first clearing 16 feet, 3½ inches and then 16-4¾ at the Pole Vault Stars held in Donetsk, Ukraine. The 26-year-old Russian set the previous record at last year's Pole Vault Stars, clearing 16-2¾. It is the sixth straight year that Isinbayeva has set a world record at this event.
2009 — Kobe Bryant leads all scorers with 27 points and Shaquille O'Neal adds 17 points in just 11 minutes, and the Western Conference beats the East 146-119 in the NBA All-Star game. Back on the same team for the first time in nearly five years, Bryant and O'Neal share the game MVP award.
2009 — Matt Kenseth wins the rain-shortened Daytona 500. Kenseth passes Elliott Sadler with 54 laps to go and NASCAR stops the season-opening event two laps later.