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THE MAIL

Dec. 24, 2012
Dec. 24, 2012

Table of Contents
Dec. 24, 2012

LEADING OFF
THE MAIL
ADRIAN PETERSON
  • ADRIAN PETERSON SHREDDED HIS KNEE ON CHRISTMAS EVE 2011 AND WENT UNDER THE KNIFE SIX DAYS LATER. NOW, DRIVING HIMSELF RELENTLESSLY, HE'S TWO GOOD GAMES FROM THE ALLTIME SINGLE-SEASON RUSHING RECORD. THE BEST RUNNING BACK OF OUR AGE IS THE NFL'S STORY OF THE YEAR

  • With two alltime greats returning in stunning form, this season's Comeback Player vote will be the toughest call of them all

COLLEGE BASKETBALL
BASEBALL
PICTURES OF THE YEAR
Departments

THE MAIL

Jordan Conn's piece about the love affair between Giants fans and Pablo Sandoval (Pandamonium) is right on. Fans in the Bay Area simply cannot get enough of the Kung Fu Panda, our bearded pitchers and clean-cut catcher. They may be eccentric, but these guys have given us two World Series titles in three years simply by playing good old-fashioned small ball.

This is an article from the Dec. 24, 2012 issue

Sal Gonzalez, San Mateo, Calif.

Jersey Boys

Is Steve Rushin really surprised that fans show support for their favorite teams by wearing jerseys (POINT AFTER)? Sure, people used to dress to the nines to go to sporting events back in the day, but then again they also used to wear a suit and tie just to go to the store to get a newspaper. It was a sign of the times, as is being more casual and wearing a team jersey in this day and age. Jerseys, team hats, body paint ... all are symbols of the relationship we have with our teams.

Tom Edgerton, Gilbert, Ariz.

Sportsman, the Reaction

In Lee Jenkins's article on LeBron James (Sportsman of the Year), James said he understands that people are going to games to watch him play and he doesn't want fans to leave the game disappointed. I really admire this sentiment. Although James was sick during a road trip in mid-November, he took the court against the Nuggets and played 42 minutes, ending the game with 27 points, 12 assists and seven rebounds. His performance proved to be an unforgettable birthday present for my 11-year-old daughter, who is a huge James fan. He gave all he had that night despite his illness, and we appreciated the Sportsman-like effort.

Mark Emmons, Omaha

In 2012, James captivated the basketball world. Still, I think the U.S. Women's Olympic gymnastics team should have been the choice for Sportsman of the Year. Those five young ladies captivated the entire sports world with their gold-medal-winning performances in London. It was nearly impossible to watch them without a smile crossing your face. The way in which they supported each other is something that can be admired by fans of any sport.

Charlie Kowalski, Milwaukee

As great as your article on LeBron James was, what resonated most with me about the Sportsman of the Year package was Greg Nelson's opening photograph of James in midair, leaping toward the basket. The image was iconic in its power and beauty.

Jack L Stein IV, Seattle

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FEEDBACK

Will Josh Hamilton be a good fit for the Angels?

Paul Williams: No. He strikes out too much and Anaheim's ballpark is difficult for lefthanded hitters. I anticipate his home runs will drop by about 10. If he does not learn to walk more, his batting average will probably fall by 30 or 40 points.

Mark Schultz: No. He's aging, he has injury problems, and Los Angeles is one of the biggest drug hubs in the United States.

Teddy Burns: He should have stayed in Texas. He already had the supporting cast in place there to win.

Guy-Pascal Weiner: Yes. He and Pujols could be the best 1-2 punch in history.

Mike Tamayo: A guy like Hamilton is a good fit anywhere because he is a power hitter. Still, the Angels' problems are with pitching so it's a bit surprising.

De ClarkDec: As a Rangers fan, I'm glad to see him go. He was a prima donna in Texas and the past two seasons have been riddled with the soap opera that surrounds his personal life.

Bobby Erickson: No. We've seen it with the Lakers already this season. Just because a team has a stacked roster on offense doesn't mean it will have success.

TWEET OF THE WEEK

"95% OF COWBOYS FANS DON'T EVEN WATCH FOOTBALL OR UNDERSTAND IT. THEY JUST WAIT UNTIL THE END OF THE GAME AND REACT"

JORGE PEREZ (@JORGEPEREZLAD)

PHOTOWALTER IOOSS JR. (COVER)FOR DEC. 10, 2012PHOTOROBERT BECK (HAMILTON)PHOTOTWITTER.COM (TWEET)PHOTO