Hello to all of my followers, it has been a while. I apologize for my absence. I have been dealing with a lot of personal troubles. Due to a family illness I have been forced to move to Los Angeles, but fear not my fellow Seattleites I am still with you in spirit. While I have been gone a lot has happened in the Seattle sports world. Our Hawks made an epic end of the season run, only to fall short of the NFC championship game by 30 seconds. With “DangeRuss” and “The Beast” at the helm of our offense with “The Legion of Boom” backing the Seahawks have worked their way into the talk of Super Bowl contenders.
My Dawgs on the other hand are not creating the same kind of buzz, or any buzz for that matter. The Washington men are lacking a leader since stars Terrence Ross and Tony Wroten jumped ship for the NBA. Everyone expected sharp shooting C.J. Wilcox to take over the scoring load with the help from seniors Scott Suggs and Abdul Gady, but that has not been the case. With Suggs and Gady not producing on the offensive end it has allowed teams to key on Wilcox. This has rendered the Dawgs inept from outside the ark. If the Huskies want to make it into the Big Dance they will need their upperclassmen to get it together before the Pac-12 Tournament. The only bright spot for the Dawgs so far is their future which features red-shirt freshman Andrew Andrews (he’s so nice they named him twice) and Seattle’s god son Shawn Kemp Jr. Both have shown their potential on the offensive end of the court making Washington an attractive destination for incoming prospects.
Despite Seattle’s dramatic drop off on the hard wood over the past few years with the loss of the Sonics and the disintegration of the Huskies, we have a lot more to look forward to other than another WNBA championship. Thanks to Chris Hansen, Steve Ballmer, the Nordstrom Brothers, and other investors; it seems as though the Super Sonics are going to make their long awaited return in the form of the Sacramento Kings. The bonus prize lies in Seattle products Aaron Brooks and rising star Isaiah Thomas. Hansen and his group have come to an agreement with the Maloof family, who own the Kings, for over $525 million dollars. The deal is pending the approval of the League as well as a counter offer from Sacramento Mayor, and former NBA All-Star, Kevin Johnson and his group of local investors. As much as I understand the people of Sacramento’s frustration I am thoroughly excited to harvest their basketball team.
Stay faithful Seattle, the good times are just around the corner!
The Mariners Finally Break Out The Big Buck$!
After much speculation about Felix Hernandez’s future with the Seattle Mariners, GM Jack Zduriencik ended the perennial debate once and for all with one giant contract extension. The 7 year $175 million deal is the second largest contract for a starting pitcher in Major League history. Felix has made it clear that the Mariners are the only team he wants to play for. “The King” says that it has been his desire since Seattle signed him in 2002 to be a Mariner for life.
Professional free-style snowmobile rider and X-Games medalist Caleb Moore passed away today after complications from a horrific crash last week. While attempting a flip he crashed and was crushed by his 400 LB snowmobile. He suffered a heart contusion that eventually led to severe brain damage and his eventual death. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the whole Moore family. This is a tremendous loss for everyone in the extreme sports world.
The Huskies have had a roller coaster start to the 2012-13 season. They started off with three losses at home in the preseason to teams they should have handled easily. The Dawgs lost two close games to Albany and Nevada, 63-62 and 76-73 respectively. The ugliest of Washington’s eight losses came at the hands of Colorado State who rammed the Dawgs, 73-55. They finished non-conference play with an 8-5 record and not much to hang their hats on.
Then Pac-12 play started and it seemed like the Dawgs were gaining some momentum. They won their first four conference games; defeating Washington State, Cal, Stanford, and Colorado. With the first three wins coming on the road it looked as though Coach Lorenzo Romar had found a way to make a fairly young group of players gel into cohesive team. Then came the game against Utah at Hec Ed Pavilion that featured the homecoming of Seattle native and former classmate of mine Glen Dean, Roosevelt High School sand out. The Junior guard has bounced around a bit starting at Portland State and then Eastern Washington until he finally found a home in the Pac-12.
Glen and the rest of the Running Utes came out with a chip on their shoulder putting the Dawgs in a hole early. I attended the game with my dad and I remember one play in particular when Dean stole a pass and scored an easy lay-up. At that moment I thought to myself, ‘Oh no this doesn’t look good.’ The Dawgs never caught up to the Utes who ran away with it for a 74-65 win. Washington proceeded to drop their next two games to Oregon State and Oregon.
Despite their recent losing streak the Huskies showed life in their 81-76 loss to Oregon at the hostile Matthew Knight Arena. Going up against the 16th ranked Ducks, who are off to their best start in nearly 90 years, the Dawgs went into the half trailing by only 4 points. Scott Suggs got things started scoring the first 7 points for the Huskies while Andrew Andrews and C.J. Wilcox picked up 11 and 8 first half points. Despite going down by as many as 14 in the second half the Huskies made it close. Fueled by a pair of Abdul Gady 3-pointers and a tremendous second half by Shawn Kemp Jr. who finished with 10 points on 5-6 shooting, Washington played hard until the final horn.
With no wins against quality teams so far the Huskies will have to do a lot of catching up if they hope to make a run at the NCAA tournament. It will be an uphill battle as the Dawgs have to face Oregon once more as well as Arizona, Arizona State, and UCLA twice a piece. Washington has a tough path carved out for them and if they don’t come together soon they may be facing another N.I.T. appearance. There is one bright spot for Washington and it lies in their future, Andrew Andrews, the guard so nice they named him twice. The redshirt freshman is averaging 8.9 points per game off the bench and is blossoming into a serious offensive threat. If Romar can work his magic on this young group of scorers the Dawgs might be able to steal the Pac-12 Tournament and sneak into the “Big Dance.”
Richard Sherman Mic’d up.
Congratulations to Reggie Evans. The former Seattle Sonics forward collected a career 23 rebounds in a win over the Philadelphia 76ers. The Sonics signed Evans as an undrafted free-agent in 2002 and he quickly became known for his ferocity in the paint and superb rebounding skills. He moved into a starting role for the Sonics in the 2004-2005 season starting all 79 games. In a season that remains one of the best of his career he recorded 9.3 rebounds and 4.9 points per game. Seattle traded Reggie to the Denver Nuggets in the middle of the 2005-2006 season after another productive start. Since then he has bounced around the league and currently resides on the Brooklyn Nets bench.
With recent rumors of the Sacramento Kings relocating to Seattle it’s hard not to reminisce about the good old days.
Washington Post: Robert Griffin III Has Partial Tears of ACL and LCL, MRI Suggests
Terrible news for Griffin, the Redskins and, really, every NFL fan. You have to be heartless to root for injuries, even if it weakens a rival.
Bring On Atlanta!
It was another cold start for Seahawks who fell behind early for a second straight week. This time the deficit was greater and the stakes were even higher. In a game that featured two quarterbacks – Russell Wilson and Robert Griffin III – who are Rookie of the Year candidates with nearly as much publicity as Barak Obama and Mitt Romney, Seattle found themselves down 14-0 at the end of the first quarter. The Redskins dominated the first 15 minutes leaving the Hawks with only one first down and nine total yards on offense. On the other side of the ball things were looking just as bleak. Seattle’s highly ranked defense found themselves back peddling as Alfred Morris pounded the ball into the red zone where RG3 picked up two passing touchdowns, one to Evan Royster and the second to the tight end Paulson.
With Russell Wilson facing his largest deficit in the most important game of his young NFL career, nobody had any doubts. I will admit I was nervous after going down two touchdowns on the road but I had faith, as did the rest of Seattle that the comeback kid would strike again. Wilson finally found his stride early in the second quarter when he connected with Sidney Rice on a beautiful pass and catch for a gain of 27 to the Washington 12. Once again Rice came up big with some fancy footwork on the sideline to help put Seattle on the board. Unfortunately they had to settle for a field goal and three points.
With the Hawks on the board things stated to look a little brighter for Seattle but it was still a long way to making it a game. What they needed most was a stop on defense and that is exactly what they got. After an illegal contact penalty on Brandon Browner that negated a forced fumble by Chris Clemons, the defense brought the pressure. On third down and two Griffin was forced to throw the ball away giving Seattle the ball with a chance to pull within one score. What happened next was the first of the two most important play of the game, both made by “Mr. January” Marshawn Lynch. Like Reggie Jackson was Mr. October for the MLB, “Beast Mode” has shown he is the one you can count on to deliver the homerun blow.
The Hawks started their drive from the 27 with two bruising runs from Lynch for a first down. Then when Wilson went to the Seahawks staple, play action, except this time he fumbled the ball as he tried to pull it back from Marshawn’s grasp. It was a mad scramble for the ball and Wilson tipped the ball as he fell to the ground in hopes a fellow Hawk would land on it. Out of nowhere “The Beast” come flying in and scoops up the ball with one hand taking it all the way to the Redskins 36 yard line. After the game when asked about the play Wilson praised his running back.
“Marshawn always tells me ‘Russ I got your back’… That was an unbelievable play. Marshawn had my back and he was right there and picked up the ball and had a big gain… That was one of the biggest plays of the game… The situation we were in, that was big.”
Wilson quickly worked his way into the red zone with a pass to full back Michael Robinson that went for 19 yards. Robinson has been an integral part of Seattle’s bruising run game, leading the way for Lynch, but recently he has become a go to guy on a few passing plays. After Russell scrambled for 11 yards setting up 3rd and goal from the 4 Wilson found Rob again, this time for a touchdown. The Hawks defense would get another stop and Steven Hauschka, despite a sore ankle, tacked on a field goal before the half to make the score 14-13 Washington.
Seattle started the second half with the ball and a whole lot of momentum. On the first play of the half Lynch gashed the Skins for 26 yards and the Hawks quickly moved into striking distance. After three first downs on three consecutive plays Seattle found themselves on the Washington two yard line with a chance to take the lead for the first time. The plan was simple: FEED THE BEAST! Then came the unthinkable. For the second week in a row Marshawn Lynch fumbled the football. The Redskins recovered and for the time being slowed the momentum of the Hawks.
After trading punts with Washington the Hawks started at their own 21 still down by one point with a little under 11 minutes left to play. Lynch got things going with an 18 yard run but Washington buckled down forcing a 3rd and 10. This time it was Zach Miller who came up big as he took a Russell Wilson pass 22 yards for the first down. As the Hawks moved into Redskin territory only one thing was one Marshawn Lynch’s mind: Redemption. He got that redemption on a 24 yard touchdown run that could have be the little brother to his famous 67 yard “Beast Quake” run that knocked off the Saints in the 2010 Wild Card round. I shall name this one the “The Tremor.” Who was the man to sprint down field and lay the touchdown sealing block on a Washington defender? Russell Wilson of course who after the game said he was just trying to return the favor.
“I Just try to help him out every once in a while when he gets down field and I make a play for him.”
The run defined Lynch and his physical mentality. As soon as he got a glimpse of the goal line he lowered his shoulder and plowed his way through a group of defenders for the score. From that point forward the flood gates seemed to open for Seattle. After the touchdown Pete Carroll opted to go for a two point conversion to make it a 7 point game. Naturally it was a success and the momentum shift was complete. The nail in Washington’s coffin came on the next two plays, the first a sack by Bruce Irvin and the second a fumbled snap that resulted in the reinjuring of RG3’s knee.
With the Hawks regaining possession up by a touchdown and Griffin out for the game it seemed as though it were all but over. All that remained was finishing on defense and what better group to do so than the 2nd ranked Seahawks. Although there were moments early when it looked like they were not living up to their reputation, in the end they closed the book on the NFL’s best rushing offense. The 24-14 victory was the Hawks first road playoff victory since December 31, 1983 when Seattle knocked off the Dolphins 27-20 in Miami. They will need to be a little quicker at stopping the Falcons high powered offense if they want to come out of Atlanta with a win next week. Until then, GO HAWKS!!!
Last time the Hawks met the Redskins in the Playoffs was in the Wild Card round on this date in 2008. The Hawks finished the 2007 regular season with a 10-6 record winning them the NFC West Title. QB Matt Hasselbeck threw for 3966 yards with a passer rating of 91.4 and 28 touchdowns. Bobby Engram lead all receivers with 1147 yards while Shaun Alexander and Maurice Morris split the rushing load and combined for 1344 yards. Seattle won their playoff game against Washington 35-14 thanks to interception returns by Jordan Babineaux and Marcus Trufant for touchdowns. The Hawks scored 22 points in the fourth quarter to stifle a late Redskins comeback.
The Hawks have a slight chance of winning the NFC West tomorrow. That all depends on a miserable Arizona Cardinals team and a QB who has never started an NFL game. If they can manage to end their season on a high note and nock off the Division leading San Francisco 49ers a Hawks win would clinch the division for Seattle. For any of this to happen the Hawks will have to exactly what they have done the last three games: control the game. To do that the defense will have to contain running back Stephen Jackson just like this with gang tackling. Welcome to the “Legion of Boom!”