There the Whole Time

Shortly before Game 1 of the NBA Finals, I attempted to write a “Woe is Me” article about how disgusted I was that the Thunder were this close to winning an NBA Championship that should have been Seattle’s. It was full of personal accounts of my genuine disgust of their success. The prime example being how I almost beheaded someone who claimed I should be rooting for the Thunder for “Western Conference Pride”. I counted on the Spurs to beat them. For me. I became enamored with the Spurs roster of veteran swingmen coming together to teach the young folks a lesson. And with San Antonio up 2-0, I was loving it. I was writing about how they were the Sonics, playing like an unlockable team in an NBA2K game against the Thunder. Then, for the next four games, my hope for the bullet that would kill the Thunder’s hopes of getting a championship that should be ours wilted. I fell asleep writing that article.

I woke up with the intention of finishing it, getting it off before Game 1 of the Finals to show how mentally unstable I was in the face of a Thunder Championship. It didn’t get done. And I’m glad it didn’t, because a week and a half later I came out with a new perspective on basketball.

I watched Game 1 in a bowling alley in Oxford, Ohio on the “fun night” of a five day Leadership Academy. That is the equivalent of having someone ask you what your favorite Nickelback song is. I bowled a gentleman’s 71, then retired on top like Barry Sanders did to sit in the greasy chairs of the bowling alley to watch the game. Sitting amongst 80 guys who had no capability of understanding how the guy from Seattle wanted Miami to win so badly, I was a pariah. Every LeBron bucket got a, “%#@& YEAH!” from yours truly and a bunch of judgments that I had the worst case of undiagnosed Tourette’s in the history of mankind from just about everyone else. A thunderous James jam evoked a dickhead fan reaction in me that even I was surprised by. The Heat became the same team the Spurs did, and at that moment I put all my faith in LeBron James to stop the Thunder. He was my Lee Harvey Oswald to the Thunder’s JFK. But, as the Heat became increasingly out of Game 1, my visible sickness increased. I couldn’t hang. Not only was I watching the Thunder get closer to what should have been mine, Seattle’s, something that would have upset me in my own living room; I was watching 85 people my age loving it. And why not, the Thunder are everything the casual NBA fan would love. Unassuming superstars, no player that would ever or has ever had a “Decision” with a taste-the-rainbow supply of Vitamin Water behind him like LeBron did, and an all around likeable team.

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Lunchtime Links – 5/30

We’re back with another set of links that might be of interest…

  • Leading off is an article by Sportspress Northwest that describes the atrocious home batting average for the Mariners. A solid .193. You would think they would have better luck in the friendly confines of Safeco Field, but that is not the case. What I found interesting  is the author, John Hickey, brings up that the best hitter at home for the M’s is Casper Wells, with a .235 average. He’s currently in AAA Tacoma.
  • It was brought to my attention that an official website has been made for the new Sonics arena deal. There are also Facebook and Twitter pages affiliated with the site. On them you can find how you can personally help further the possibilities of a new arena in Seattle.
  • There was some sad news that broke yesterday. Johnie Kirton, former Husky running back and tight end, was found dead in his Santa Clara hotel room. The cause of death is still unknown. Kirton, 26, was currently playing for the San Jose SaberCats of the Arena Football League. He was on the Huskies from 2004 to 2008 and served as a team captain in his senior season.
  • Lastly, here’s an article by Larry Stone of The Seattle Times debating what the future holds with the Mariners closing role. Brandon League has been struggling as of late, but can he salvage the season and possibly net some prospects at the deadline for the M’s? Stone also talks about Stephen Pryor, a reliever in AAA Tacoma who is absolutely tearing up the competition at the moment. Pryor currently boasts a stat line of a 0.00 ERA over 11.0 innings pitched and 14 strikeouts. On top of that, if you combine those stats with his AA stats from earlier in the season, he has a 0.67 ERA over 27.0 innings pitched and 38 strikeouts. Impressive to say the least.

That’s all we have for you today! While I have your attention, go like our Facebook page in order to be updated on new content that is published on SS&O.

Lunchtime Links – 5/22

Another batch of lunchtime links coming right up!

  • The Sonics – Thunder saga continues, this time in regards to a shirt made by Warpaint Clothing. The front shows of the shirts shows the OKC skyline, resembling the iconic logo of the Supes. The back reads “Thank You Seattle – OKC.” As one would expect, a lot of hate has been sent to the Oklahoman company, some even as drastic as death threats. The company has since taken the shirts off of their shop. But, you be the judge, and vote in the poll below.

  • The first match of the Cascadia Cup was this weekend for the Sounders and they played Vancouver to a 2-2 draw north of the border. Whitecaps midfielder Davide Chumiento had a few words to say about the Sounders after the match. Big words for a player who has yet to beat the Rave Green since his team joined the MLS. The Sounders are in 3rd in the Western Conference standings, sitting three points back with two games in hand.
  • Mark Schlabach, writer for ESPN, came out with his second edition of the “Way-Too-Early Preseason Top 25” and the Huskies broke into the rankings at #21. Yeah, nothing has been played in the 2012 college football season, but it’s always nice to see a national media writer show some respect for the Purple and Gold. Other Pac-12 teams to make the list are USC at #2, Oregon at #4, and Stanford at #12. The Huskies matchup in week 2, LSU, is listed as the #1 team. It should be an interesting start to the season, that’s for sure.
  • The Mariners picked up a solid win against the Rangers on Monday night, riding the pitching of King Felix. His stat line was impressive, conceding only 1 run over 8 innings while fanning 7 batters. He just continues to throw gems almost every time he takes the mound. The offensive production has been great on this four game win streak, so hopefully the M’s can keep it rolling.
  • Monday evening news broke that the Seahawks had acquired former Pro Bowler Kellen Winslow Jr. for only a 7th round pick that could be upgraded to a 6th rounder. I love the move by Pete Carroll here as Winslow has posted solid numbers over the recent years. The key will be if he can stay healthy and avoid off the field incidents. If that happens, he should fit nicely alongside Zach Miller, who is looking to bounce back after being injured for most of last season.

That’s it for now! Hope you enjoyed the light reading and let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.


Getting Closer to NBA in Seattle

May 16, 2012 marked a new rung on the ladder towards getting the NBA back in Seattle. The dilemma that doomed the Sonics’ hopes of staying in Seattle back in 2008 was the idea that KeyArena was not a suitable arena for an NBA franchise, and unless a plan for a new arena was put in place, Satan Clay Bennett was going to move the team to Oklahoma City. Fast forward to today, where the Oklahoma City Thunder have a Conference Semifinal game against the Lake show tonight, and there is no NBA team in Seattle. But today, undeniable progress was made.

The San Francisco area hedge-fund owner, Chris Hansen, has led the charge since announcing earlier this year his intention to build an arena in Seattle’s SODO region for an NBA and NHL team contingent on government funding. Hansen might as well be at the staff meetings for when the Avengers meet up because the guy is an absolute stud. Today however, he came out to say that he and his group, the City of Seattle, and King County have come to a MoU. MoU is short for Memorandum of Understanding, and is also short for awesome news.

The MoU basically states the following

  • If a professional basketball and/or hockey team were to be purchased, the $490 million dollar proposed arena would be built
  • Public cost would decrease significantly if only an NBA team were acquired (previously both NBA and NHL franchises were required to start building)
  • $290 million of private funding to build the arena (remaining $200 million comes from the city/county investment)
  • The arena would hold 18,500 raving lunatic Sonics fans
  • The ownership group has full intentions of re-acquiring the name, colors, records, and history of the Seattle SuperSonics from the Oklahoma City Thunder

The fact that the last bullet is a necessity is a sad truth. The failure of the city to keep the Sonics four years ago has forced this much effort to be undertaken to get it all back. The reason that this picture exists:

This graphic makes sense because the Thunder averaged approximately zero wins a year from 1979-2008

But that is neither here nor there, as the current proposal is the best bet the city has to bring the NBA back to Seattle.

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Lunchtime Links – 5/3

Something new here on SS&O will be the occurrence of “Lunchtime Links,” a rather straight and to the point post providing our viewers with notable links that are relevant to the Seattle sports world. Now, the goal is to do this intermittently around the lunchtime hours, hence the name, but I was a little late today so you will have to forgive me this time. Anyways, enough talking and more link-age.

  • Great article today on Deadspin by Jeremy Repanich, a former Sonics employee, giving his insights on the well known turnover and departure of our NBA franchise. I will warn you, it is a rather long read, but it brings a lot of interesting inside information to the table. Enjoy.
  • Bob Condotta, the Seattle Times Husky Football beat writer, released his unofficial depth chart following the end of the Huskies spring practices. Definitely worth a look for those of you Dawg fans out there.
  • This article is from Percy Allen, the Seattle Times Husky Basketball beat writer, and reports that the Husky hoops team will be taking a Summer trip to Europe and Africa, including Aziz N’Diaye’s home country of Senegal. 
  • Lastly, is an article written by Nick Eaton of the Seattle PI posing the question: Who should be the starting quarterback for the Seahawks? Worth the read, as it gives a background of each of the four signal callers currently on the roster.

That’s all I have for today. Let me know what you think about this new type of post; whether it’s worth your time or just a waste. We always encourage feedback. Thanks for reading!


The Debut of the Top 11: All-Time NBA Jerseys

This is the beginning of a beautiful thing. Not beautiful in the classic, Jennifer Anniston sense, but more beautiful in the “Ambiguous sports rankings with considerable bias” sense. My goal for Top 11 is for it to be a reoccurring feature on Seattle Sports & Otherwise, in where I pick a particular category and then rank my personal Top 11 of that category. I chose 11 because I couldn’t pick ten. And it stuck. This particular edition will focus on something very near and dear to my heart, the aesthetics of the NBA. I am a strong proponent of the “Look good, play good” mantra. And I can prove its merit. You will never see the Bobcats win a championship (or ten games this season) when they roll out in these. And yes I do mean players that look like Adam Morrison, who has fully embraced his role of looking like a 1970’s bar owner on the Lakers bench. But no more extraneous introduction is necessary, as the launch of the Top 11 is underway.

11. Early 90’s New Jersey Nets folks

This choice is one that may be what some would call, ridiculous. However, the fact is that the early 1990’s New Jersey Nets had a very classic jersey, and also happened to have my all-time favorite player, Drazen Petrovic on that same team. I will admit my obsession with Petrovic is recent, stemming from watching the ESPN 30 for 30 documentary on him and Vlade Divac called “Once Brothers”, but also for the fact that Petrovic had an absolutely absurd season in 1991. He averaged 20.6 points a game, while averaging .508 from the field, .444 from the three point line, and .808 from the free throw line, with a positive assist/turnover ratio. You will never see those stats again from anyone not named Kevin Durant or Lebron James and probably not even them. Petrovic was one of the best pure scorers the league has seen, and I happen to “own” his jersey. The reason for the quotations is the fact that I have not received the shipment of the jersey from the borderline illegal Chinese jersey site I got it from. But as for the actual aesthetics of the jersey, they belong on this list trust me. The red, white, and blue card is played perfectly (which I appreciate), and the sleeve striping is classic and represents the simplicity I miss in most NBA uniforms. Solid jersey, legendary player. RIP Drazen.

10. Mid-to-late 1990’s Toronto Raptors

The Classic Jurassics

The definition of a novelty jersey, but one that captures the swag of the early years of Vince Carter perfectly. Carter only wore these for one season, his ’98-’99 NBA Rookie of the Year campaign, but my god he made them look cool. Granted, this was my favorite team as a young tyke for the reason that there was a dinosaur on the logo and I watched Jurassic Park 8 times a day and walked around like a T-Rex in my underwear.But that doesn’t have anything to do with the niceness of these jerseys. Both the purple and the white versions exude greatness, with the lightning pinstripes and bizarre logo and number placement supplementing the idea that there is a velociraptor dribbling a basketball on the jersey. That is ballsy, and gives a big middle finger to unoriginal jerseys of the previous era. The 90’s were some crazy times folks and these jerseys capture that idea better than any.

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