Seattle’s first title shot since Super Bowl XL is tonight in Atlanta. Game 3, Storm vs. Dream. It’s a 5 p.m. start, you can watch it on ESPN2, or on the Interwebs on ESPN3. If you choose to count the WNBA as a major professional league, this is one of the very few times that a Seattle team has played in a game that could win them a title. The Mariners never have; the Seahawks only once. The Sonics did it three times–twice in 1978, losing both times to the Bullets, and once in ’79, when they won the city’s first championship with a Game 5 win over Washington. And the Storm, in ’04, when they claimed their first WNBA championship with a victory over Connecticut.
If you buy the idea that the Storm have an overwhelming home-court advantage, it’s tough to see them winning any of these games in Atlanta. They barely pulled out wins in Games 1 and 2 with a raucous home crowd behind them.
Once again, the key will be containing Dream star Angel McCoughtry. The defensive combination of Tanisha Wright and Swin Cash has done a terrific job so far–McCoughtry has scored 40 points in the two finals games, but on 13-40 shooting. Cutting down on turnovers would be nice as well, the Storm committed 18 in each of the first two finals games.
Mariners swept by Boston [MLB] The Red Sox finished off a sweep of the hapless Mariners with a 5-1 win. Slow clap for Casey Kotchman, who got picked off third with nobody out in the second inning. Insult to injury as Adrian Beltre hit his 28th homer of the year in the win.
What They’re Saying
“They’ve got the style of defense that they want and a lot of guys that can make plays. So they’re very dangerous. We told the team this morning that things happen in a hurry when you play Seattle.” — Denver head coach Josh McDaniels on the Seahawks [TNT]
“He’s a really good football player, so we’re going to try to involve him if he’s able.” Pete Carroll on Leroy Hill [Seattle P-I]
In Other News
The Qwest Field turf is under suspicion for assault–two Sounders were hurt on it in practice, and this after Max Unger’s turf toe injury in Week One. Adrian Hanauer talked to reporters about whether it might be replaced–possibly by grass!
Husky hoops forward Tyreese Breshers retired due to unannounced “medical reasons”–presumably the recurring leg injuries that have troubled him since he came to UW. He’ll stay around the program and get his degree at UW (good for him!) Breshers ends his college career with 1 assist in 335 minutes…and that one came in his final collegiate game. This will free up more playing time for returner Darnell Gant, and recruit Aziz N’Diaye.
The Rainiers took a 2-0 series lead in the PCL Championship, hitting 5 homers in an 11-7 win. After an off-day for travel from Memphis to Memphis, the series will resume Friday.
The Heisman Trophy folks say there will be no winner of the 2005 Heisman. Bummer, because Jerome Harrison of Wazzu finished 9th in the voting, and I was kind of hoping that if Vince Young, Matt Leinart, Brady Quinn, Michael Robinson, A.J. Hawk, Deangelo Williams and Drew Olson all ended up admitting having broken NCAA rule, Harrison would’ve gotten the award.
Storm @ Atlanta, WNBA Finals Game 3, 5 p.m. (ESPN2).