Teofilo Stevenson, two-time Olympic heavyweight boxing champion who in different political circumstances might have been wearing Muhammad Ali's professional diamond belt by now, has been burned - perhaps severely - on face and body by an exploding alcohol stove in his home.
The limitations to the U.S.-Cuba thaw were pointed up when it took until last night for word to reach the States from Havana that Stevenson was injured - on Saturday - and hospitalized in a special burn unit. And by conflicting reports that (1) his hurts were minor, "not expected to prevent him from trying for a third gold medal at Moscow in 1980," versus (2) he was listed in poor condition and that although doctors said they felt his life was not in danger there was no word on whether it means the end of the handsom, 6-foot-5, 230-pound stylist's ring career at 25.
After stopping American contender Duane Bobick on the way to Munich gold in 1972 and KOing the U.S.' John Tate en route the Montreal '76 title, Stevenson was regarded by many as pro championship timber. But his response was, "I have no stomach for it. With so many people in the world starving, it is a shame to get $5 million for a fight. I'm an ameteur. I will always be an amateur. I am happy was I am" . . .
Hot from the Hub: Deadline for bids to take the Boston Red Sox off the hands of the Widow Yawkey is 1 p.m. today - and count Ted Williams interested. Old Mr. .406 out of baseball since 1972 after making AL Manager of Year 1969 for turning Nats into tigers. Teddy Ballgame personally expressed same to the Yawkey trust as member of a prospective purchasing group 15 strong, says the Boston Herald American in a copyright article. A half-dozen rival offers in hand, and sale could be effected by end of this season. Is the Machiavellian hand of Bob Short in there anywhere? . . .
Bowie Kuhn appointed a committee of five yesterday to review rules for election to baseball's Hall of Fame and Joe Cronin, Lee MacPhail, Chub Feeny are on it. Nothing for Lou Brock to be concerned about - he's being immortalized right now, with Feeney's announcement that the NL base-stealing champ each year henceforth will be presented the Lou Brock Award.
Jurgy Hanover, the high-priced son of Super Bowl named after You Know Who, drew Post 3 not 9 in a field of 16 standard-breds entered for Saturday's $284,131 Hambletonian, harness racing's big one for 3-year-olds. Before Green Speed won the Yonkers Trot, jewel one of the trotting triple crown in which the upcoming DuQuoin, III., classic is jewel two, Sonny's - er, Jurgy's - trainer, John Simpson Jr. (youngest driver to win a Hambo) ranked his colt ahead of Green Speed among the sophomore crop. Simpson pegged him fourth and Green Speed fifth behind Speed In Action, Texas and Cold Comfort - the latter two also entered in Saturday's race that missed by one horse by being split into two divisions . . . Further in the Redskin-related vein, boxer Mike Baker must have put a rosy glow on backers George Allen and Edward Bennett Williams with his stunner Tuesday night. Irish Mike, of Arlington, Va., and points south, snapped a slump by knocking out the formidable Jean-Claude LeClair in 1:12 of the first round in LeClair's own bailiwick, Montreal . . .
A step toward the day when the American taxpayer has to put his hard-earned buck where his heart is presumed to be: a bill to reorganize the U.S. Olympic Committee at last has been introduced in the Senate, and it calls for a $20 million appropriation (half to build and administer permanent training centers) . . . Meanwhile, the federal Manpower program has placed Barbara Allen, wife of baseball's (until lately) Dick Allen, in her first job since they married 14 years ago: a public relations specialist for Bucks County, Pa. Federal regulations covering Manpower, usually set strict limits on the family income of applicants, but the Bucks County commission chairman said Mrs. Allen's job had no such limit. Anyway, hubby - who used to make like $225,000 a year - retired in July . . .
The human lemmings have migrated to the Isle of Man again - motorcycle racers began practice runs for the annual Tourist Trophy race with fatalities approximately No. 113 and 114 in the course's history chalked up within a few hours . . . Janet Guthrie plans to shuttle back and forth between Darlington, S.C., and Ontario, Calif., this week for qualifying and finals in the Ontario 500 for Indy-type cars Sunday and the Southern 500 for stocks Monday. "The flying time in the type of plane we'll be using is only about five hours," said Lynda Ferreri of Charlotte, owner of Guthrie's stock . . . Goalie Mike Ivanow, who after his conviction won a playoff game for Seattle, en route to the Sounders' NASL title loss (with another goalkeeper) to the Cosmos, has been ordered to turn himself in Sept. 6 to start serving a three-year term in federal prison. Ivanow took $70,313 from the Russian American Credit Union of San Francisco while he was manager . . . Soccer Bowl-78, NASL's next championship, will be held in August 1978 where the crowds are - Giants Stadium. Meanwhile, the arena in the Jersey Meadowlands is making ready for the first big-time cricket match on these shores, Saturday, American all-stars vs. Caribbeans, the latter managed by Everton Weeks - he's, natch, "the Babe Ruth of Cricket."