The fight between Sugar Ray Leonard and Marvelous Marvin Hagler (Comeback for the Ages, April 13) illuminated a fundamental lesson in the power of the human will. Until Leonard climbed into the ring that Monday night at Caesars Palace, no boxer had ever retired from the ring for more than three years and returned to defeat a champion. Further, Leonard was moving up a class in weight and also attempting to dethrone the middleweight personification of ferocity. Leonard overcame the odds, the precedent and Marvelous Marvin.
New York City
All the credit in the world should go to Sugar Ray Leonard, who made a comeback as grand as any I have ever seen. But he did not beat Hagler.
For as long as I can remember, the unwritten rule has been that the challenger must clearly beat the champion to take the coveted belt. This obviously did not happen. Leonard won because he badly out-show-bizzed the champion. Boxing doesn't need show biz.
AMERICA'S CROWN JEWEL
While reading Ron Fimrite's essay Let's Just Play Ball (POINT AFTER, April 6), I took special note of his statement that baseball is everywhere. For several years in the early '70s, I flew a slow, low-flying airplane around our country, and I was always amazed at the number of ballparks I would see. Large cities, small towns, villages, even where there were only farms—there was always a ballpark. The baseball diamond is the crown jewel of America.
Thanks but no thanks for Ron Fimrite's article Pow! Wow! (April 6). The thrill of seeing Chief Wahoo and two Cleveland Indians on your cover quickly turned into what felt like a slap in the face after I read the suggestion that Cleveland Stadium is a "dump." Many people would disagree, including a number of Cleveland citizens who have nominated the stadium for the National Register of Historic Places.
THOMAS E. GREEN
God love Cory Snyder, but he is quoted as saying that Cleveland jokes must come from people who have never been to Cleveland. Sorry, Cory, but most of the jokes from the '70s and early '80s originated right at home. Thank the Lord they're mostly a thing of the past.
With great expectations of a suitable-for-framing SI cover of Indiana's Steve Alford or Keith Smart, I rushed to my mailbox to find—you've gotta be kidding—two Cleveland Indians smiling out at me and only a tiny picture of Alford. Surely your fine baseball issue could have waited one week.
HOGGIN' THE SPOTLIGHT
All we fans hear lately is how everybody hates the Mets. Now we have to read that Gary Carter "behaved like a 4-H kid whose hog had just won the blue ribbon"—all because of some high fives and a curtain call after he hit one out (Manager on a Red-Hot Seat, April 6). C'mon, isn't baseball for the fans? What's Carter supposed to do—leave the fans standing and clapping, and not give them what they want? Give the Mets a break!
Seaside Heights, N.J.
As a 4-H agent, a lifelong Boston Red Sox fan and a recent Mets hater, I take offense at E.M. Swift's comparison of Gary Carter to a 4-H kid. In addition to showing hogs and other livestock, 4-H'ers undertake projects involving leadership, citizenship and community service, and they act with class and dignity whether they have won a blue, red or white ribbon or nothing at all. Carter, on the other hand, is an arrogant showboat who could take a few lessons in class from a 4-H member. In fact, Carter and Swift are hereby invited to our swine show at the Rochester (N.H.) Fair on Sept. 18. The Mets should be well out of the pennant race by then.
ALL FOR ALFORD
As a recent Indiana graduate in Steve Alford's major, business, I know of one pressure he had to face that Alexander Wolff's story (That Championship Touch, April 13) did not mention: his classes. I admire and respect Steve for being able to balance basketball and business school for four years. Hats off to a true student-athlete!
Please show a picture of Alford's fiancèe, Tanya Frost, so we can see just how beautiful a girl you can get by being so perfect.
•See Frost and Alford below.—ED.
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