Your article on hockey czar R. Alan Eagle-son (The Man Who Rules Hockey, July 2) represents the kind of thorough and provocative analysis that makes SI different from other sports publications. Anyone who has followed the NHL has to wonder about the kind of control Eagleson seems to wield in and around the game. John Papanek and Bill Brubaker have cast considerable light on the matter, portraying a wheeler-dealer who apparently acts in the interests of the players he represents only when those interests coincide with his own. If members of the NHL Players' Association continue to endorse Eagleson's priorities and style by retaining him as their executive director, one has to assume that they're getting just what they deserve.
Professional hockey suffers from a lack of exposure on major U.S. television networks, but perhaps your article on Alan Eagleson will serve as an eye-opener for all those who have an interest in the sport. Eagleson's conflict of interest is an issue that needed examination. I hope the NHLPA membership will wise up and terminate Eagleson's contract.
I disagree with the slant of your article on Alan Eagleson. Eagleson has bent over backward to put Canada on the map in international hockey and make it an extremely successful moneymaker for all concerned. His quarterbacking of the Canada- U.S.S.R. series in 1972 allowed the entire nation to rise simultaneously to cheer Paul Henderson's winning goal and at the same time make one and all proud to be Canadian.
Besides Eagleson's obvious patriotism and his devotion to hockey, he displays the same enthusiasm for another part of his life. I attended high school with his son in Toronto. While on the way home one day, I stopped in on a school hockey game in our arena. The only parent in attendance was Eagleson, briefcase open on his knees, working and watching his son. I was extremely impressed with this and haven't forgotten it.
I've a tremendous amount of respect for Eagleson and everything he has done. It's too bad the article couldn't have taken a positive approach.
Considering SI's general lack of hockey coverage, I was puzzled that you chose hockey powerbroker Alan Eagleson as the subject for a major expose. Eagleson, like everyone else in pro sports today, including players, agents and owners, looks out for No. 1. At least, in the process, Eagleson gives Canadian hockey a small chance to compete against the world champions, the Soviets. Perhaps you could follow up this article with an investigation into the financial dealings and backgrounds of pro baseball and football moguls.
THE MAINE WAY
It was wonderful to read Steve Wulf's article It's the Maine Attraction (July 9) about Old Orchard Beach's Triple A baseball team, the Maine Guides, which represents all that is good in sport. The enthusiasm of owner Jordan Kobritz and town manager Jerry Plante, the exuberance of the L.L. Bean-clad crowd and the beauty of the "bahlpahk" made this story one the rest of the sporting world would be wise to take notice of and appreciate—minus the mosquitoes, of course. The choice between playing in Old Orchard Beach and being called up to Cleveland would be an agonizing one. Take me out to the ball game in Maine, where the Guides' compasses are pointing in the right direction.
MICHAEL W. YEN
I was delighted to read your article on Maine's beloved Guides. While Maine may not be rich in baseball history, it does have loyal, knowledgeable fans. The Red Sox, New England's team, have a Maine Day every year to show their appreciation of this state's fans. We have sat close to our TVs to cheer the University of Maine's Black Bears in the College World Series for four years running, and we rush out to buy tickets to see our Guides.
No plush seats or domed stadiums for us. Just lobstah, squeetahs, the smell of pine all around and lots of baseball. Finest kind!
MARK A. COWAN
West Buxton, Maine
In SCORECARD (July 9) you noted that Quinn Buckner joined an elite group as the fifth man ever to score a rare triple—by playing on NCAA, Olympic and NBA championship teams. You were quite correct but should have carried it one step further.