Letters to sports: Highs and lows of Olympics coverage

Suni Lee competes on the balance beam during the Tokyo Olympics.
(Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

I quote Dylan Hernandez regarding the Olympics .”There were no stars. U.S had Biles, Rapinoe and Durant and that’s about it.” Did he really watch? Dressel, Ledecky, Mu, McLaughlin, Lee, Felix and Crouser among others did amazing things. What does it take to be a star to Dylan? Winning and setting world records are not enough? Does he need controversy?

Bert Bergen
La Cañada



When Dylan Hernandez criticizes Michael Norman’s performance at the Olympics it’s puzzling. With a chance to select a story of humanity, he chooses to diss a young athlete for a disappointing performance. Norman is an outstanding young man who unfortunately was not able to run his best race in his first shot at an Olympic medal. It’s a shame Dylan couldn’t write something more purposeful. Some say Dylan choked.

Rich Tilton


I was shocked by some of the affrontive statements columnist Dylan Hernandez made about Olympic sprinter Michael Norman when he failed to [medal in] the 400-meter finals.

To call him “the most disappointing athlete on the most underachieving American sprint team in recent history” was shocking and shameful.

And to say that he is defined by that one race until he posts a different result on a similar stage is a rigid, narrow-minded and inaccurate assessment — especially when his whole history and body of work say otherwise. One race does not define a person.

Janet Spaulding



Will The Times please put Dylan Hernandez out of his misery and stop making him cover sports?

Biles battling back to win a bronze medal wasn’t enough for him? It’s easy to root against the soulless IOC. Yes, they planned arguably the largest multi-national event in a no-win situation of a global pandemic. But tell the athletes who sacrificed and competed, like the ones pictured right below his morose piece. Tell the immigrant family of Suni Lee or the whole state of Alaska cheering on Lydia Jacoby.

Hernandez would find a glass of water in the desert and complain it wasn’t cold enough. Yes, money plays too big a role in all of sports. Rather than focus on the negative implications of that, can’t we celebrate the joyous moments it gives us?

Jeff Heister

Well done, NBC

Contrary to some letters posted last week, I found NBC’s Olympic coverage superb. Isaiah Jewett and many others displayed levels of sportsmanship rarely seen in pro athletics.

The celebrations of family and friendship made athletic success more real and meaningful. And as we rooted for Americans of many races and backgrounds, our divisions disappeared for 2½ weeks.

Thank you, NBC.

Larry Walker
U.S. Olympic team member 1976 and ’80
Canoga Park



For as long as I can remember, I’ve looked forward to immersing myself in Olympic television coverage every four years. The more stations … the bigger the variety of sports … and the most hours on air, the better. I’d give NBC a gold medal for delivering all three with an unparalleled collection of events, back stories on the athletes and the best collection of announcers I can remember.

Michael Roth
Sherman Oaks
(Note: Roth is vice president of communications for AEG)

Sitting protest

In Monday’s sports section, you state that the soaring popularity of virtual games could prompt the IOC to consider them soon. Imagine a “sport” where the competitors never leave their chairs to compete. If esports makes it into the Olympics, what would be next — tiddlywinks, checkers, chess?

Mike Clark
Los Angeles


Tricia Sugita, CEO of Flyquest Sports, says that gamers are athletes because of the skill and time they put in. That would make me an athlete from my typing skills in 1957.


Can I be up for future medals? Or given one from the past?

Bernadine Bednarz
Los Angeles


While there may have been doubts about Jared Goff’s arm, and Anthony Lynn’s clock management, there can be no doubt about the strength of both men’s character. They handled the end of their tenures in Los Angeles with grace and class. They will form a formidable duo in Detroit, and Sam Farmer’s article on Thursday was a generous tribute.

John Finch

Ohtani is good, but not AL MVP

I think Shohei Ohtani is definitely the MVP for the Angels. For the American League, not a chance. He may be the Player of the Year, and if you want to change the league’s MVP Award to Player of the Year, that’s fine with me. The MVP should be a player who makes a difference in getting his team into the playoffs. A .500 hitter with 100 home runs, 200 RBIs, 300 hits and 100 stolen bases, with a .999 fielding average, should not be the MVP if he is on a .500 team. Period.

Richard Peterson



As noted in the beginning of Bill Shaikin’s column, the Angels need pitching and have needed it desperately for more than half a decade. So why would he and others think that shelling out $200 million plus of Moreno’s money fixes the pitching?

The absolute last thing the Angels need is to sign another big-ticket position player, especially one coming off an injury! Money would be spent much wiser rebuilding the bullpen rather than spending on high-priced position players.

Michael DiFiore
Long Beach

Dollars and sense

I don’t know who Dennis Schroder’s agent is but it’s very obvious his financial advisor is Jody Reed.

Erik Schuman
Fountain Valley


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