The recent alliance of LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade in Miami will change the way players are recruited, signed and managed in sports around the world. Expect megastars to wield more power than ever before in shaping their squads.

Jay P. Granat, River Vale, N.J.

LeBron's decision to play for the Heat might have been admired were it not for the arrogance and narcissism of the spectacle that announced his choice. But strip away the hype, and are we not left with three players whose desire to win with great teammates overcame the modern, Borasesque cancer of demanding the most money possible, regardless of the athletic quality of life on one's new team (The Plot Starts Here, July 19)? As a Celtics fan I will not root for this trio, but I grudgingly respect its willingness to take control of a situation in which athletes are often objects of the uncompromising greed of their agents, rather than subjects of their own successes.

Matt Turnbull Leadville, Colo.

For more than 20 years I have taught college students whose biggest concern was whether they could give a speech in front of their peers. It is doubtful that any of them could handle the pressure put on LeBron by the Cavaliers, the residents of Ohio and the national press. Who would blame a young man for wanting to step out of such a crucible? Let's let LeBron have the opportunity to play ball on his terms.

Paula Michal-Johnson

Fountain Hill, Pa.

How good could it possibly feel to win a championship knowing you stacked your own team?

Olivia Comella-Kaufman

Pepper Pike, Ohio

Viva La Roja

Unlike much of the nation I have nothing against King James and wish him well. But Grant Wahl's excellent story about Spain's first World Cup win deserved to be on the cover (The Agony and the Ecstasy, July 19). Wahl said it best in a July 12 story: "The World Cup final is the one true Big Game, the Hope Diamond of sports."

Angela Mapes Turner

Auburn, Ind.

Spain was one of the most beautiful sides I've ever seen, and it deserved to be on SI's cover. I have to wait four years to see this wonderful tournament again, but I'll be hearing about LeBron every week for the rest of his career.

Steve Caraffa, St. Louis

In Defense of Lance

I was disappointed in the article about Lance Armstrong's performance in the Tour de France (End of the Road, July 19). Even if Armstrong's days of winning the Tour are over, I think it's important to show respect for his achievements.

Rick Loscalzo, Tampa

Austin Murphy's assertion that Armstrong's performance in stage 8 of the Tour de France left him "exposed as a hollow imitation" of his former self is highly misleading. The circumstances that preceded Lance's poor results should have been explained. He suffered two significant crashes and was further delayed by a separate incident involving other riders. But then maybe Murphy has never attempted to ride uphill while bleeding, injured and winded from erasing a crash-induced deficit.

Dan Rhule, Delaware, Ohio

More Than a Sport

The article by S.L. Price shines a light on the passion the Iroquois have for the game of lacrosse (Pride of a Nation, July 19). I never knew the full story of the sport's Native American roots, even though I've played for 20 years. I am glad that the tradition, history and lure of this great game is alive and well among its creators.

John Provost, Mineola, N.Y.

Price captured not only the deep spiritual connection the Iroquois have to lacrosse, but also the importance of preserving culture, language and independence in aboriginal societies. Lacrosse, like life, can often be tough, but the resilient messages of You come and get it and We're still here are testaments to Iroquois perseverance and to what is possible.

Dan Van Os, Penticton, B.C.

I always thought that lacrosse was the pastime of a few wealthy individuals, and I was pleasantly surprised to learn of the storied history of the game. The sport has gotten a black eye over the last few years, so it's especially nice to hear that it actually belongs to a people who are rich in other ways: heritage and tradition.

Eric Amick, Covington, La.

That such a small group can compete on the global stage only hints at the dedication, pride and commitment that these young men bring to the field.

Timothy Shea, Kingston, N.H.

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PHOTOGREGORY HEISLER (COVER) TWO PHOTOS
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)