Candace Parker of the Los Angeles Sparks and Carlos Bocanegra, the former UCLA player who is a defender on the U.S. national soccer team, are among the local figures featured prominently in ESPN The Magazine's annual issue devoted to the (nude) bodies of top athletes. This year many of the athletes who agreed to take it all off for the magazine are headed to the London Olympics, but there are some pros included in the group, such as the baseball slugger Jose Bautista and a jockey, Mike Smith, who was photographed outside a barn at Santa Anita.
Among the athletes who were photographed at the magazine's Los Angeles sessions are the NFL's Rob Gronkowski, mixed martial artist Ronda Rousey, sprinter Carmelita Jeter, springer Walter Dix and soccer forward Abby Wambach. Winner for creativity this year has to be Art Streiber's strategic positioning and lighting of the U.S. women's volleyball team that will play at the Olympics in London. He's also got them in various active movements in the print magazine, tastefully shadowed.
All photos from ESPN The Magazine.
More pics, clothed: The New York Times sports section has a photo layout today on U.S. athletes from the last London games in 1948 who are still living.
Olympics note: Two-time beach volleyball gold medalist Misty May-Treanor says of the London Olympics: "This is my last tournament." She will be 36 when the games conclude. Press-Telegram