One of the best examples of Doug Collins's altruism came when he was playing for the Sixers during the 1977--78 season: He relinquished his starting spot in the NBA All-Star Game to retiring Celtics legend John Havlicek. For Collins to give up that type of spotlight to a rival Celtics player showed a great amount of class and dedication to the spirit of good sportsmanship.
John Molori, Methuen, Mass.
Thank you for your article on Collins and what he has done for the 76ers (Sixer Fixer, April 11). After years of watching Philadelphia struggle, I now actually enjoy watching the team on the court. My favorite part of the game is when the buzzer sounds and Collins embraces his players. The care he has for these guys is clearly evident, in both victory and defeat.
Chris Zirpoli, Riverside, N.J.
Collins was a great basketball player, and he's a tremendous coach today. However, for me he set the gold standard in his career at the microphone. He was by far the best color commentator I've heard in any sport. When he was analyzing a game, I often found myself following what he was saying more closely than the action on the court.
Peter Anderson Willow Park, Texas
The Great DH Debate
From the moment the designated hitter rule (Going, Going ... Gone?, April 11) went into effect in 1973, I have always thought it was an abomination. Now that we know that even the players who are assigned to DH don't like it, it's time to drive a stake through this folly forever. Let's go back to the roots of baseball, when managers actually had to use some strategy and pitchers had to play on both sides of the plate.
Robert Forman, New York City
Aside from the fact that it allows aging and immobile power hitters to continue their careers, the true value of the designated hitter is that it eliminates baseball's worst moment at the plate: watching pitchers swing the bat.