Every basketball fan should take the time to marvel at the Oklahoma City Thunder. It is truly remarkable and commendable that in these Twitter-infused, me-first modern times there is still a group of men like this who remain humble, down to earth and bashfully successful.
This is an article from the Nov. 15, 2010 issue
Jack L. Stein, Seattle
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It is a breath of fresh air to see an NBA franchise (Rolling Thunder, Oct. 25) that cares more about developing players than recruiting them. It's also great to see the loyalty that the Thunder gives its employees and players. However, what's distressing is that the franchise did not give the same loyalty to its former city, Seattle. The Sonics were a great team, and it was heartbreaking to see them go. That pain has now tripled since Oklahoma City is favored to finish second in the West.
Jacob Hamilton, Seattle
I hope your comment regarding Oklahoma City fans being the most appreciative in the NBA did not imply that Seattle fans were not appreciative of the SuperSonics. Just because Seattle taxpayers did not vote for a tax increase in a city that had already built a new baseball stadium for the Mariners and a new football stadium for the Seahawks and had recently remodeled its basketball arena does not mean that we did not love and appreciate the team that was stolen from us.
Although I enjoyed your article about Kevin Durant and the Thunder and their place in the community, I was disappointed that you never mentioned six-year vet Nick Collison, a quiet leader who carried the torch for the team as it moved from Seattle to Oklahoma City.
Scott Baker, Houston
Once again SPORTS ILLUSTRATED reveals its bias against West Coast teams! The Lakers are the two-time defending NBA champions, yet you put the Thunder on the cover of your NBA Preview issue??? Give me a break!!! I am curious to see how L.A. is treated after it three-peats!
Kelvin D. Filer
Long Beach, Calif.
Damon Hack's story on the NFL's tight ends (The New Go-to Guys, Oct. 25) was right on. I've long believed that tight ends were underrated and underused in football. Good tight ends should be like good catchers in baseball: tough as nails but with hands soft enough to drag in anything that comes their way.
Jared W. Ellis
Port Hueneme, Calif.
SI runs a story about "the golden age of the tight end" without mentioning the Cowboys' Jason Witten, a six-time Pro Bowler, who is now fourth all time among tight ends in receptions? Really?
Frank Murtaugh, Memphis
To put Mike Ditka No. 1 on the tight end list is equally as surprising as not even mentioning Hall of Famer Jackie Smith.
Jack Weiss, Wilmington, N.C.
All in the Name
Your list of best gridiron names (SCORECARD, Oct. 25) reminded me of the trade made by my Cleveland Browns in 1974: wide receiver Fair Hooker for Saints wideout Jubilee Dunbar.
Dan Bailey, East Aurora, N.Y.
SI omitted one of my favorite gridiron names of all time, Georgia Tech defensive back Randy Rhino. Not only was the name great, but so was the way commentator Keith Jackson said it: Rrrrrrandy Rrrrrrrrrhino! Priceless!
West Yarmouth, Mass.
As far as great football names go, what about wideout Jade Butcher from Indiana's 1967 Rose Bowl team?
John Pembroke, Park Ridge, Ill.
The toughest football name of all time? Dick Butkus. The sound of it just spits nails.
Newport Coast, Calif.
Missing the Cut
Is it possible that Darrell Waltrip did not make the NASCAR Hall of Fame (SCORECARD, Oct. 25) this year because his notorious "Boogity, boogity, boogity, let's go racing boys!" chant is annoying and also because he shows so much favoritism toward Kyle Busch during his weekly commentary that you'd think Busch was Waltrip's own son?
New Canaan, Conn.
Marc Klaiman is definitely the right man to lead the Anna Maria College Amcats football team (POINT AFTER, Oct. 25). Klaiman's Do it right! motto is a lesson that every athlete who has ever played for him takes away even after they leave the playing field. In a day when college athletes are far more likely to make the headlines for drunken driving, sex scandals or assault charges than they are for being men of character, Klaiman stands for playing with pride and dignity.
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