In case you forgot, there is a country north of you called Canada. I was thoroughly disgusted at your failure to recognize three members of Canada's ski team. Ken Read, David Irwin and Jim Hunter all finished in the top 10 in the premier ski event at Innsbruck, the men's downhill.
New Hamburg, Ontario
Although there were many outstanding athletes, the true heroine of Innsbruck was Rosi Mittermaier. She deserves the highest accolades not just for her years of struggle and dedication, which paid off in three medals, but for always maintaining a friendly and exuberant attitude—her all-too-rare ability to smile, win or lose. Rosi embodies the ideal of the Olympic movement.
William Leggett's review of TV coverage of the Winter Olympics properly awarded gold medals to Dick Button and the ABC camera crews. How about another for your own Anita Verschoth? Her background section in your Olympic preview was our family's bible for the Games, and our faith was rewarded by the accuracy of her predictions, particularly in skating.
JOHN S. BLISS
New York City
My compliments to Ray Kennedy on an expertly written piece on the leader of the two-time Stanley Cup champions (Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Clarke
, Feb. 23). Bobby Clarke and friends have brought us Philly fans something we have long been waiting for: respectability in the professional sports world. Now it is a great feeling to wake up in the morning and read the sports page.
Take Pete Rose and Jimmy Connors for fierce competitiveness. Add Henry Aaron for a consistently good job year after year. Throw in Bill Russell for the ability to bring a team together. Add a truckload each of unselfishness, humility and kindness. What do you have? The finest man around, in or out of sports: hardworking Bobby Clarke.
Atlantic City, N.J.
I agree that Bobby Clarke is a player who always gives 100%, but I also think he is a dirty hockey player who gets away with too much. I was glad to see Ray Kennedy bring out the fact that even Coach Fred Shero admits, " Clarke carries his stick a little higher than it should be."
FREE THROW OR THROWAWAY?
Indiana's nationally televised overtime defeat of Michigan (BASKETBALL'S WEEK, Feb. 16) presented a perfect example of one of basketball's ridiculous rules. Indiana won because it violated the rules. By committing more than the limit of six personal fouls in the second half, the Hoosiers forced Michigan, leading by two points with 14 seconds left, to go to the line and risk giving Indiana the ball, which it did without scoring any points. If Indiana had not been over the foul limit, Michigan would have kept the ball. Similarly, if the rules allowed a team that was fouled in, say, the last two minutes of each half the choice of keeping the ball instead of having to shoot one-and-one free throws Michigan undoubtedly would have elected to keep the ball, and most likely would have won. The rule should be changed.
FRANK G. POLLOCK
Bloomfield Hills, Mich.
MANAGING THE BULLS
Curry Kirkpatrick seems to draw some unusual conclusions about the Chicago Bulls and their managing partner, Jonathan Kovler (Choice Seats at the Bull Ring, Feb. 2). As Kovler's close personal friend for more than 12 of his 29 years, I can assure you that the Bulls are not one of his "toys." He is an intelligent, articulate gentleman with a logical business mind. As a dean's list student at American University and as the current director of a large charitable foundation, he has demonstrated that he can do more in 24 hours than most people can in a week.
Since when is it wrong to apply some normal "rules of thumb" to professional basketball players who think that signed three-year contracts should be torn up and renegotiated at their whim? Unlike Kovler, some star-struck owners drool at their players' feet, give them enormous salaries and guarantee a losing season at the gate. Professional basketball needs more owners like Kovler.
RONALD B. NISSENBAUM
HUNTING IN BAJA
I found your Jan. 19 article Baja: Road to Adventure factual and exciting, but a bit irresponsible. You mention the availability of bighorn-sheep hunting but you do not mention that it is illegal to hunt this animal in Baja unless you qualify for a bighorn-sheep permit, which costs $4,100. Only 20 of these permits are given to nonresidents each season. Anyone caught hunting this animal without a permit is subject to imprisonment, fine and confiscation of all guns and equipment, including automobile and /or plane.