Magazine article Newsweek

Who Will We Want to Be like Next?

Magazine article Newsweek

Who Will We Want to Be like Next?

Article excerpt

Kobe Bryant, 20

BASKETBALL

New Lakers coach Phil Jackson's Zen discipline could be the best thing that ever happened to Bryant's pretty face and raw talent. If Kobe reins in his shot selection, his teammates will adore him as much as the fans do.

Kevin Garnett, 23

BASKETBALL

Minnesota's Garnett is the most athletic 7-footer the NBA's ever seen. Strong, nimble and fanatical about winning, he has a harder edge than Duncan or Bryant. That gives him (and 76er Allen Iverson) more street cred than the other two.

Chamique Holdsclaw, 21

BASKETBALL

Vying for the title of world's top female athlete, there's Mia, Marion-- and Meek. She's already tearing up the WNBA with her Jordanesque spin moves and fade- away jumpers. And she wears No. 23.

Derek Jeter, 25

BASEBALL

Someday Jeter's jersey number (2) will follow him into retirement. Until then, the Yankee shortstop will challenge yearly for the MVP award. He's a notorious Nice Guy who's easy on the eyes, and he's got the magazine covers to prove it.

Alex Rodriguez, 23

BASEBALL

A-Rod is what baseball folks call a "five-tool" player: power, batting average, speed, glove, arm--and they're all topnotch. Mets fans hope he'll bolt Seattle for New York, where he could play in a larger Latino market and create, with his buddy Jeter, an epic cross-town rivalry.

Vanessa Atler, 17

GYMNASTICS

America's best hope for the individual all-round gold medal in Sydney is one tough cookie: when Chinese gymnast Sang Lan was paralyzed attempting a vault, Atler was warming up nearby. "I wasn't scared," she said later. "Lots of people fear things. I didn't." Atler won the event.

Peyton Manning, 23

FOOTBALL

NFL heroes are usually quarterbacks. So with Elway gone and Dan Marino not far behind, look for Peyton to take their place. A polite Southerner, the Colts' quarterback always says the right thing--and always throws the ball to the right place. …

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