" Mike Tyson disgraces himself and his sport"? How can one dishonor two entities that have no honor?
LEAH SETTLE GIBBS, MONROE, VA.
Holyfield vs. Tyson
Mike Tyson's saying that he bit off Evander Holyfield's ear to protect his career because he has children to raise is an insult to all single parents who struggle from paycheck to paycheck (Feeding Frenzy, July 7). If Tyson is living paycheck to paycheck with a $30 million payday, I suggest that he spend less time partying and really tend to his kids.
MARE SHAFFER, Allentown, Pa.
To hear certain members of the media tell it, Tyson would be the hands-down winner of the Dirtiest Fighter of All Time title. However, Tyson doesn't come close to Mysterious Billy Smith, two-time welterweight champion from Eastport, Maine, who in an 85-bout career lost by disqualification 10 times.
For example, in an 1896 fight Smith floored Billy Gallagher of San Francisco in the first round and stomped on Gallagher's head while he was down. The referee called the bout a draw and left the ring.
In one of his six fights with Joe Walcott of Barbados (no relation to the later heavyweight champion Jersey Joe Walcott), Smith was caught by the referee biting the top of Walcott's shaved head when Walcott screamed in pain. Before another Smith-Walcott bout, Smith bragged to reporters, "I'll bite Walcott's ears off!" Reminded that such an action would lead to disqualification, Walcott replied, "Sure, but I'd rather have my ears." Before an 1898 bout against Walcott, Smith had to put up a $250 forfeit—a considerable chunk of change back then—on his word not to commit any further atrocities upon Walcott.
STEVE NICOLAISEN, Antelope, Calif.
Just as Michael Irvin, Dennis Rodman and a host of others have been given second, third and fourth chances, Mike Tyson will also be given another chance. He makes too many people too much money never to fight again.
KEN MONTGOMERY, Eden, Idaho
As a Las Vegas local who serves up spirits and a slice of hope to tourists, I appreciated the exposure the fight brought to my city. Here, the more bizarre the event, the more financially secure I become.
R.A. CONROY, Las Vegas
How wonderful to attend games of the WNBA, to see such sportsmanship, enthusiasm and happy, involved fans (They Got Next, June 30). The only frustrating part is seeing male officials when there are so many well-qualified women referees.
PAT STANISLASKI, Hillsborough, N.J.
"Tipping off to large crowds and great expectations, the hyper-hyped WNBA fell short only on the court." Only on the court? Isn't that the only place that really matters? I was appalled at the lack of fundamentals of these players. I have seen better basketball by middle school boys. The WNBA can spend millions on hype, but until it raises its skill level, all it will be is a bunch of people floundering around on the court, pretending to be a genuine pro league.
QUINN RYAN, Austin
As much as I hate to admit it, interleague play is fun to watch (Nice to Meet You, June 23). Anything that brings fans back to the ballparks is O.K. with me. A perfect day for me was seeing the Royals versus the Cubs and singing Take Me Out to the Ballgame with Harry Caray and George Brett.
JERRY W. HARPER