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March 03, 2014
March 03, 2014

Table of Contents
March 3, 2014

SI.com
THE MAIL
2014 OLYMPICS
MOTOR SPORTS
BASEBALL
  • THE MONEYBALL ERA MOCKED SMALL BALL, BUT DIDN'T TOTALLY DISCREDIT IT. WITH THE GAME IN THE MIDST OF A SCORING DROUGHT, TAKING CARE OF THE LITTLE THINGS IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN EVER

THE BIRTH OF SHOWTIME
  • In the early '80s, Pat Riley and Magic Johnson began a transformation that put the Lakers on the leading edge of sports culture. But it took a really, really strange series of events—and some Magicavellian maneuvering—to set the stage

Brazil
  • AS THE WORLD TURNS ITS EYES TOWARD THE NEXT OLYMPIC GAMES, IN RIO, AND ON THE EVE OF A WORLD CUP IN THE SPIRITUAL HOME OF SOCCER, A QUESTION HANGS IN THE AIR LIKE A LINGERING CLOUD OF TEAR GAS: HOW DO YOU RECONCILE

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SI.COM

This is an article from the March 3, 2014 issue

FOR MARCH 3, 2014

Feeling Drafty

Only one player can be the first to walk across the stage at Radio City on May 8. Who will it be? Hint: SI.com's Chris Burke is leaning toward taking a quarterback over South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney in his mock draft this week. Whether you'll be following Clowney, Texas A&M's Johnny Manziel (hey, he looked pretty fast at the combine) or Louisville's Teddy Bridgewater, visit SI.com/NFL for the 2014 NFL Mock Draft Database, which will include all the picks from SPORTS ILLUSTRATED's NFL experts and links to team pages. Tracking favorite players will be a breeze.

SI DIGITAL BONUS

The Hunt's Over

From the SI Vault | Feb. 23, 1998

Sixteen years before his son took a second checkered flag at the Daytona 500, Dale Earnhardt reached Victory Lane at the Great American Race. It had taken the seven-time Cup champion 20 attempts to finally win it, and even a guy as ornery as the Man in Black could get a little misty over that By Ed Hinton

SI COMMENTARY

Alexander Wolff on ...

THE OLYMPIC IMPACT

People around the world will make their own assessments of Vladimir Putin's Russia, of just how welcoming Sochi was or wasn't. They'll decide whether to vacation or do business there.

"Russia," Putin once said, "will either be great, or it will not be at all." But he is a hard man dedicated to hard tactics who doesn't understand that there's a time and place to lighten one's touch. Soft power can make a great nation greater with its reach and influence, and the Olympics are the ultimate opportunity for its exercise. Whatever Russia is, or is becoming—and I'm still not sure—Putin and his country could have unlocked so much more from these Olympics than they did.

SWIM MOBILE APP

Take Swimsuit everywhere you go with SI's mobile app, which features all the content from the past three issues.

VISIT SI.COM/MOBILE

SI SWIMSUIT

A supermodel can, in fact, defy gravity. Take a behind-the-scenes peek at Kate Upton doing just that during a Zero-G shoot for this year's Swimsuit Issue at SI.com/swimsuit. There you'll also find more exclusive videos of all the 2014 models, including those unforgettable Swimsuit Legends.

PHOTO ILLUSTRATIONPHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY NICOLE ZIGMONT; SCOTT CUNNINGHAM FOR SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (CLOWNEY); GREG NELSON FOR SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (MANZIEL); AL TIELEMANS/SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (BRIDGEWATER)PHOTOMICHAEL J. LEBRECHT II FOR SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (WOLFF)PHOTOGEORGE TIEDEMANN FOR SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (EARNHARDT)TWO PHOTOS