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Wait 'til Next Year!

Feb. 04, 2013
Feb. 04, 2013

Table of Contents
Feb. 4, 2013

THE MAIL
LEADING OFF
SUPER BOWL XLVII
  • FOUR OF THE LAST FIVE SUPER BOWLS HAVE BEEN DECIDED ON THE FINAL DRIVE. IF THE PAST IS PROLOGUE, THIS YEAR'S CHAMPIONSHIP COULD WELL COME DOWN TO A TWO-MINUTE DRILL—AND TO HOW WELL JOE FLACCO OR COLIN KAEPERNICK HANDLES THE PRESSURE WHEN THE CLOCK IS TICK ... TICK ... TICKING

  • Keeping in mind score, yardage, clock management and big plays, SI stacked up the five best and the three worst (criteria: cringe-worthiness) two-minute drills in XLVI years of Super Bowls

  • HarBowl, Colin Kaepernick and Ray Lewis's last game—you already know the popular plotlines. But these games often come down to the small stuff. For regurgitation during Super Bowl XLVII, consider these subplots and supporting characters

  • THE MEEK SHALL INHERIT THE EARTH—BUT THEY'RE UNLIKELY TO TAKE HOME THE LOMBARDI TROPHY THIS WEEK. HOW CHRISTIAN ATHLETES RECONCILE THE CULTURE OF FOOTBALL WITH THE TEACHINGS OF THEIR FAITH

COLLEGE BASKETBALL
SOCCER
  • U.S. STRIKER HÉRCULEZ GÓMEZ RESCUED HIS CAREER SOUTH OF THE BORDER, AND NOW HE'S THRIVING IN ONE OF THE WORLD'S DEADLIEST CITIES

COLLEGE FOOTBALL
  • THERE ARE STORIES OTHER THAN THE MANTI TE'O SAGA TO BE TOLD ABOUT NOTRE DAME—REALLY. HERE ARE TWO: FUTURE WIDEOUTS COREY ROBINSON AND TORII HUNTER JR. MAYBE THE NAMES OF THEIR DADS RING A BELL?

SPECIAL REPORT
Departments

Wait 'til Next Year!

They were snubbed last week, but come 2014, these five players will be looking to make their All-Star debuts

The 2013 All-Star Game in Houston will welcome six first-time All-Stars, including three—Kyrie Irving, Paul George and Jrue Holiday—under the age of 23. There most likely won't be another bumper crop of youngsters next season, thanks to relatively weak 2010 and '11 drafts. Indeed, the list of candidates to join the All-Star Game's under-23 club now starts and ends with 19-year-old Anthony Davis, the No. 1 pick in '12. So when the '14 All-Star selection process rolls around, expect the list of first-timers to be dominated by these more established names.

This is an article from the Feb. 4, 2013 issue

STEPHEN CURRY His gaudy 45.4 three-point shooting percentage draws the headlines, but Curry's mastery of pick-and-roll spacing and his improved decision-making have powered Golden State's surprising 26--17 start. Curry was one of the West's top snubs, along with Grizzlies center Marc Gasol, and he's a logical pick if an injury replacement is needed this year. [1]

BROOK LOPEZ There was mild outrage in the advanced-stats community when Lopez wasn't invited to Houston, because his Player Efficiency Rating ranks fourth in the league, trailing only LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Chris Paul. That type of company is clearly a stretch, but the Nets center has a case as the East's best big man, averaging 18.6 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.2 blocks for a Brooklyn team that could land a top-four playoff seed. [2]

SERGE IBAKA Tagging Ibaka as merely the "best weakside shot blocker in the NBA" will no longer suffice, not when he's averaging 13.9 points and 8.3 rebounds, both career highs. The Thunder's long, athletic forward is an excellent finisher, shooting 71% in the restricted area, but a reliable midrange jumper, which now accounts for nearly half of his shot attempts, has been the key factor in his offensive development. [3]

NICOLAS BATUM The French forward has thrived in the open offense favored by new Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts: He's averaging a career-high 16.4 points and is on pace to dish out more assists this year than in his four previous seasons combined. [4]

BRANDON JENNINGS A speedster whose explosive scoring potential was revealed three years ago when he was a rookie, Jennings has become a peskier defender too. [5)

PHOTOJOHN W. MCDONOUGH (CURRY)HERE COME THE KIDS Each member of the talented quintet is 24 or younger.PHOTOJOHN W. MCDONOUGH (IBAKA)[See caption above]PHOTOJOHN W. MCDONOUGH (BATUM)[See caption above]PHOTOJIM MCISAAC/GETTY IMAGES (LOPEZ)[See caption above]PHOTOCAMERON BROWNE/NBAE/GETTY IMAGES (JENNINGS)[See caption above]