Through television and other media, people are learning what bowling has to offer. One day the names of Weber, Johnson and Petraglia will be household words.
That's sure too bad about the Oakland A's and Gene Tenace (A Hero Finds There's No One for Tenace, April 2), who whines in SI that "No one ever called.... Here we are the world champs and no one pays attention." The fact of the matter is that someone (the Northern California Baseball Boosters Association) did call to request the appearance of A's players at a nonprofit father and son banquet. The boosters were told that the A's, acting on advice of Charlie O. (the man, not the mule), required payments of $500 per player for such appearances. So no A's showed up at the banquet held in Sacramento, but the San Francisco Giants came with manager, coaches, front-office personnel and several key players, and they required no payments whatsoever. So I say, hooray for the Giants, and as for Finley and the A's, they deserve one another. May they have a nice, quiet summer together in their Oakland Coliseum without any fans there to bother them.
While reading your article on Gene Tenace, I was struck by the similarity between his plight and our own. Although tiddlywinks doesn't quite yet command the public attention that baseball does, we have experienced similar feelings. The game of tiddlywinks that we play is a far cry from the trivial nursery game that we all gave up at the age of five. Its sophistication and strategy rival that of tournament chess, according to those who have played both. Although the game has been played at this level in this country for some time now (the eighth annual North American Tiddlywinks Championships were held this past February) it is still generally unnoticed. At the moment, our team at MIT, which again won the Continentals this year, is having a very difficult time finding sponsorship for the trip to England to defend its world title. Any interest or help you would have for NATwA would be most appreciated.
In his article A Lot More Where They Came From (April 2), Mark Mulvoy makes the statement: "Down east on the farm at Halifax, Nova Scotia shrewd Sam Pollock, general manager of the Canadiens, has assembled the best young team outside the NHL."
Apparently Mr. Mulvoy hasn't heard about the record-setting Cincinnati Swords, the Buffalo Sabres' farm team in the AHL. In only their second year Coach Floyd Smith's Swords finished the season with 113 points in the standings, the most ever in the history of the AHL, along with many other records too numerous to mention. Nova Scotia finished with 10l points. In addition, the Swords won 4 of the 6 games played between the two teams this season.
Here in Cincinnati we think Sabres' General Manager Punch Imlach has assembled the best team outside the NHL—young or old.
Well, you've finally done it. My patience has run out. After reading articles on the Atlanta Flames, the Boston Bruins, the New York Rangers, the Los Angeles Kings, the Buffalo Sabres, and now finally the Montreal Canadiens, I feel I must inform you that there is a hockey team in Philadelphia called the Flyers. Don't you think it's about time you gave the Flyers, the league's best expansion team, some well-deserved recognition? Although people from Minnesota and Buffalo might disagree, the fact remains that the Flyers won the season's series from both teams.
You speak of all the young players the Canadiens have sitting on the bench and playing in the minor league. That is very nice, but only the players that skate can win games for their team. And the Flyers have a few of their own. Take Bobby Clarke and Rick MacLeish for instance. Clarke has 104 points, while MacLeish has 100. Complement them with Bill Flett, 43 goals; Gary Dornhoefer, 30 goals; rookie Bill Barber, 30 goals; and Ross Lonsberry, 21 goals, and you have two of the most productive lines in the NHL. To protect the scorers is a man named Dave Schultz, who has beaten every bad man that has been crazy enough to fight him.
Cherry Hill, N.J.
Mark Mulvoy's article on the Montreal Canadiens proves once again that he is not aware that the Chicago Black Hawks exist. To say that Ken Dryden is the best goal-tender without any supporting statement is an insult to your readers. Perhaps if Mulvoy went back and studied films of the Russian series he would discover that Tony Esposito was Team Canada's standout goalie, as Ken Dryden pointed out in his article for SPORTS ILLUSTRATED. Finally, Mr. Mulvoy has completely overlooked the season's most productive line: Pit Martin, Jim Pappin and Dennis Hull. While not as glamorous as the French Connection, or as well publicized as the GAG line, the fact remains that the MPH line is the best in hockey, and it is unfortunate that SPORTS ILLUSTRATED could not find the time or space to give it the credit it deserves.
I must criticize the manner in which the NCAA and NIT basketball tournaments were handled. Just as predicted, the NCAA turned out to be another one of UCLA's mastications of teams that are not on the same level of competition, while the NIT featured some legitimate muscle, last-second excitement and some eye-catching half-time shows. The reason the NCAA finals outscored a better-played NIT two words to one the public may never know. But we all hope that next year you will give both tournaments the same coverage.