Wolff somehow managed to capture the very essence of the Connors experience: the intensity, the thrills, the chills and, yes, the occasional embarrassment. It's why I cared in the 1970s and 1980s, and why, during that wonderful two-week U.S. Open joyride in '91, I wondered what took everybody so long to catch up.
Jack F.K. Bungart, Napa, Calif.
I want to commend SI for focusing on Michael Phelps's choice to give his spot on the 4�100 medley relay to Ian Crocker (Break Out the Bubbly, Aug. 30). Phelps had earned the right to compete in that relay and set yet another world record. He decided, however, to give his fellow swimmer another opportunity. Such an unselfish act is rarely seen these days in the world of sports, and I'm glad that you emphasized it in your article.
Paul Burkhardt, Milford, N.H.
Rick Reilly does a fine job of saluting the phenomenal accomplishments of Michael Phelps in the pool at Athens (The Life of Reilly, Aug. 30). In comparing Phelps with swimming immortal Mark Spitz, however, he does the latter an injustice by failing to mention the intense psychological burden Spitz must have carried as a Jewish athlete when members of the Israeli team were murdered by terrorists in Munich on Sept. 6, 1972, two days after Spitz won his seventh medal. While Phelps was indeed physically drained, he could not have been as emotionally spent as Spitz--whose celebration was quickly curtailed because he knew his religion made him a marked man.
Andrew Scharf, New York City
Vlad All Over
Kudos to Esmeralda Santiago for her article on one of baseball's most prolific--and under the radar--players (The Quiet Warrior, Aug. 30). Vladimir Guerrero plays with passion and no superfluous flash. He's a true throwback who doesn't use batting gloves or other unnecessary gear, and is another incredible baseball story from the Dominican Republic.