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El Deportista Latino
Terry McDonell
October 06, 2008
Transforming sports and the culture
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October 06, 2008

El Deportista Latino

Transforming sports and the culture

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THIS WEEK'S Special Report, The Latino Athlete Now, reflects the enterprise of writer-reporter Melissa Segura, who started at SPORTS ILLUSTRATED as an undergraduate intern from Santa Clara University in 2001. Since then the 15th-generation New Mexican (think early-18th-century Santa Fe) has come to specialize in baseball and Latin American issues while covering a range of sports she has seen transformed by Latino athletes.

"Growing up, I'd identify with any Latino athletes that made the team," says Segura. "A generation later Latino kids find not only Latino players but superstars."

Segura herself shines brightly not just in SI and on SI.com but also on the pages of SI LATINO, the Spanish-language magazine spun off from SI in 2005 that now goes out six times a year to more than a half-million Hispanic readers in the United States.

Under editor Chris Hunt, SIL's mandate is to explore the Latinization of sports—and how that complex transformation mirrors the demographic and cultural changes happening throughout the country.

SIL features Latino athletes and teams in all sports but especially in soccer, baseball, boxing and basketball. "Our readers like variety," says Hunt, "but those on the East Coast care most about baseball, and readers elsewhere prefer soccer. So we usually produce two covers, one for the East with baseball [or as in the latest issue, basketball with New Jersey Net Eduardo Najera] and another for the rest of the country with soccer [Colombian goalkeeper Rene Higuita]."

SI subscribers can get a free subscription to SIL by going to silatino.com and simply entering their name and address.

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