June 15, 2009
June 15, 2009

Table of Contents
June 15, 2009

  • Kobe Bryant was the center of attention as the Lakers and the Magic faced off for the NBA title, but it was a less glamorous story line—the chess match under the basket—that was determining the course of the Finals

  • He meets with former presidents, counsels the U.N. and, oh, yeah, makes more than any NFL player, but Raiders cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha can still walk unrecognized through America's biggest city. Not for much longer



As an OrlandoMagic fan, I will thoroughly enjoy crashing the LeBron-Kobe Finals party.Perhaps your May 25 cover should have read "Cleveland (Falls Like a)Rock!"
Dan Weidl, Heathrow, Fla.

This is an article from the June 15, 2009 issue

I'm sane enoughto know that a magazine cover cannot really jinx any one person or team, butwhy risk it? On behalf of all Cleveland fans, I kindly request that you notplace our players on the cover again until they are holding a trophy whileriding in a parade.
W. Jason Eddy Carrollton, Ohio

For years I havebeen trying to explain to my wife, who is from the New York City area, thetorture of being a Cleveland sports fan. Now I can simply hand her JoePosnanski's article (Cleveland Rocks, May 25) and say, "Here. This explainsit all."
Charley Walters, Berea, Ohio

As a formerresident of the Cleveland area, I find the "woe is us" mentality ofcurrent Clevelanders to be unhealthy and as tiresome as that of Bostonians whofelt sorry for themselves before the Red Sox' World Series win in 2004.Clevelanders would be far better off adopting the positive spirit of the playerthey adore so much, LeBron James.
Thomas C. Smith
Frisco, Texas

It's worth notingthat the curse of Cleveland extends to a fourth sport. The NHL's ClevelandBarons hold the dubious distinction of being the last franchise in the fourmajor sports leagues to cease operation; they were merged with the MinnesotaNorth Stars in 1978, after two seasons in Cleveland.
Howard Simon
Port Washington, N.Y.

Filly Flash

Bill Frakes'sbrilliant photo of Rachel Alexandra's clean win at the Preakness says it all(Lady's First, May 25). The filly finished bright-eyed and shiny, while all theboys that followed her home looked as if they had been beaten in a dirt-clodfight.
Jeffrey Lyttle, Worthington, Ohio

Special Unit

Randy Johnsondelivers the kind of excitement (Randy Johnson Will Grind Your Bones to MakeHis Bread, May 25) that has kept me a fan of baseball through all the sport'sdisappointing issues. He is like watching moving art!
Patty Rzonca
North Olmsted, Ohio

Tax Brass

Let me get thisstraight: We're supposed to feel sorry for Helio Castroneves ("I'm Back inthe Game," May 25), who resorted to sophisticated but questionableaccounting schemes to reduce his tax bill on $5,550,000 in earnings and thenclaimed that he knew nothing about U.S. tax law when charged with tax evasion?The only part of his ordeal that I can sympathize with is his having to endureWayne Newton's singing voice mail.
Ben Woods, Menlo Park, Calif.

Dungy andVick

In Tony Dungy'splea on behalf of Michael Vick (SCORECARD, May 25), he writes, "Iunderstand how appalling dog fighting is, and in no way do I condone it."But his 960-word essay does not use the words "dog killer" or"animal abuse." No mention of drowning, hanging, shooting orelectrocution. No mention of slamming a dog to the ground because it did notwant to fight. Dungy is hiding behind the phrase "dog fighting."
Bob Mantz, Princeton, N.J.

Dungy is right.We get an awful lot of things wrong in this country, not the least of which isknowing when someone ought to be punished for their wrongs, or when thatpunishment should end. If Vick is a changed man, we'll see it in how heconducts himself on and off the field. If he's not, we'll see that too.
Steven Kopischke
Hartford, Wis.

Dungy'sdiscussion of his visit with Vick should be mandatory reading for those whowould profess to follow Christian ideals but seem to have no inclination toeven consider forgiveness.
Rodney K. Boswell
Thousand Oaks, Calif.


I have neverunderstood how Allen Iverson was considered a great player (POINT AFTER, May25). I've always thought that 75% of NBA players could outscore Iverson if theyshot as often as he did. They say AI is the Answer. I think the question is,"Who is the most overrated player in the game?"
Ned Hall, Media, Pa.

Iverson was asmall man playing among giants, and he could do things with a basketball thatno one else could. He took one team to a championship series and lost—which ismore than can be said for many others who are considered stars. Before ChrisBallard writes off Iverson's career, he should go back and watch some of thetape. Ignore the score and just watch how he played the game.
Daniel Robinson, Philadelphia

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