After months of wrangling, investor Chris Hansen and the Seattle City Council finally agreed that Hansen could take the next step in building an arena in Sodo; the Seahawks began their home schedule with a remarkable, 27-7 romp over the Dallas Cowboys; the Huskies routed Portland State in a game they absolutely had to have; the Sounders missed a chance a securing an MLS playoff berth, and the Mariners began their fade into the off-season. This Was The Week That Was:
April 25-May 1, 2011
- GOOD WEEK — Fans of the former Seattle SuperSonics had some wishes granted when the Seattle City Council and investor Chris Hansen amended the agreement between them to advance the prospects for a new $490 million hockey/basketball arena. To thank his supporters, some 1,500 strong, Hansen bought a round of beers during a celebration/rally Thursday F.X. McRory’s. In effect, Hansen can begin shopping for an NBA team after the full City Council votes Sept. 24, although opponents remain unsatisfied with the deal.
- BAD WEEK — The Storm are not so much backing into the WNBA playoffs as they are tumbling head over heels into them. The Storm were routed in three road games, falling to Atlanta 77-61, Indiana 72-48 and San Antonio 90-66, then lost at home Sunday to Connecticut 60-58. Sue Bird and Lauren Jackson are resting to let injuries heal. The Storm had at least 20 turnovers in all four losses and looked about as playoff ready as the Mariners.
- PLAY OF THE WEEK — When Fredy Montero scored in the 57th minute at Portland Saturday (he drilled the ball into the top corner of the net) he did so after taking a free kick from goalkeeper Michael Gspurning, who became the first Seattle goalie to assist on a score since Kasey Keller in 2010. I thought it was a great goal, Sounders coach Sigi Schmid said. At first when he hit it, I thought it had gone over the goal. To turn, hit that and volley it takes a lot of skill.
- STATS OF THE WEEK — Washington’s 52-13 blowout win over Portland State marked the Huskies’ widest margin of victory since they put a 53-3 number on the University of Idaho Sept. 22, 2001 . . . Tre Watson’s 79-yard return of a blocked field goal against Portland State was the Huskies’ first such TD since Roc Alexander ran one back 77 yards against Michigan Sept. 8, 2001.
- EX-SEATTLE JOCKS OF THE WEEK –Ex-Mariner Adrian Beltre (2005-09) continued a remarkable second-half tear with his 31st home run in a 6-4 Texas win over Cleveland . . . Ex-Husky WR Marcel Reece (2006-07) agreed to a contract extension with the Oakland Raiders . . . Former Sounder Alvaro Fernandez (2010-12) scored one of two Chicago goals in the Fire’s 2-1 win over Toronto FC Wednesday . . . The NFL fined former O’Dea High safety Taylor Mays of the Cincinnati Bengals $21,000 Friday for a helmet-to-helmet hit on Ravens TE Ed Dickson.
- SUNDAY, Sept. 16 — Marshawn Lynch runs for 122 yards and a three-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter, Seattle’s special teams come up with two huge first-quarter plays that lead to 10 points, and the Seahawks rock the Dallas Cowboys 27-7 at CenturyLink Field. Earning his first NFL victory, rookie quarterback Russell Wilson engineers scoring drives of 90 and 88 yards in the second half as the Seahawks improve to 1-1 . . . Matt Harrison beats the Mariners for the fourth time in 2012 and for the 10th consecutive time overall with a 2-1 decision at Rangers Ballpark. The Mariners again drop 17.5 games behind Texas in the AL West, the season’s nadir.
- SATURDAY, Sept. 15 — One week after getting blown out in the Bayou, the Washington Huskies take our their frustration on FCS-level Portland State with a 52-13 rout at CenturyLink Field. QB Keith Price engineers the rout, completing 14 of 19 for 181 yards and three touchdowns . . . Fredy Montero tallies his 12th goal of the season, on a rare assist from Michael Gspurning, but the Sounders have to settle for a 1-1 draw with the Portland Timbers in a Cascadia Cup match in the Rose City. The Sounders miss a chance to qualify for the postseason . . . Justin Smoak unloads his first home run in nearly a month (Aug. 18), giving the Mariners an 8-6 win over Texas, and saving the Mariners the embarrassment of losing a game they led 6-0.
- FRIDAY, Sept. 14 — Connor Halliday, starting in place of the injured Jeff Tuel, throws for 378 yards and four touchdowns, leading Washington State to a 35-27 victory over winless (0-3) UNLV in Las Vegas. A team only slightly better than UNLV would have beaten the Cougars. “We need to be better when the meat’s on the table,” says WSU coach Mike Leach . . . The Texas Rangers tee off on Seattle’s bullpen for seven runs in the eighth inning and rout the Mariners 9-3 . . . With Sue Bird and Lauren Jackson out with injuries, the Storm (13-17) fall to the San Antonio Silver Stars 90-66, the club’s third loss of the week.
- THURSDAY, Sept. 13 — Felix Hernandez, the American League Pitcher of the Month for August, suffers his third consecutive September defeat by matching his career high with seven earned runs allowed in an 8-3 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays. “If you throw the ball in the middle of the plate, they’re going to hit. This one’s on me,” says Hernandez.
- WEDNESDAY, Sept. 12 — Kevin Millwood gets the Mariners through five innings and the bullpen takes it from there, pitching four hitless innings in Seattle’s 3-2 win at Toronto. The Mariners collect their runs on Miguel Olivo’s 10th home run and a two-run single by Franklin Gutierrez . . . Missing their top two guards, Sue Bird and Tanisha Wright, and with a 28-turnover night, the Storm are no match for Indiana and lose 72-48. Lauren Jackson, in a post-Olympics funk, scores just four points and throws the ball away seven times.
- TUESDAY, Sept. 11 — Erasmo Ramirez records his first major league victory in a 4-3 win over Toronto, backed by Kyle Seager, who delivers three hits, including his 18th home run . . . Storm crumble to the Atlanta Dream 77-61 in Atlanta. Storm whittles a 16-point Atlanta lead to 49-46, but then comes apart. Lauren Jackson has 13 points and nine rebounds.
- MONDAY, Sept. 10 — The Seattle City Council reaches a tentative deal with investor Chris Hansen to amend an agreement to build a $490 million basketball/hockey arena in Sodo. Hansen redirects $47 million originally dedicated to construction debt retirement to mitigate traffic problems and help KeyArena. “This is the deal that gets us where we want to be,” says Dave Gering, head of the Manufacturing Industrial Council, which represents 60 businesses in Sodo . . . Eddie Johnson of the Sounders is selected MLS Player of the Week after scoring two goals, including the game winner in the 89th minute, against Chivas USA.
2: Times that Seattle’s Eddie Johnson has been named MLS Player of the Week this season (Week 22 vs. L.A. Galaxy, Week 27 Chivas USA).
When Franklin Gutierrez made an error in Toronto Tuesday, it was his first in three years covering 301 games and 845 chances, an AL record.
Miguel Olivo’s 10th homer (Wednesday) made him the sixth player to reach double digits in homers, most for the Mariners since the 2007 season.
With 39 career TD passes, Keith Price ranks fourth on the UW’s career list behind Cody Pickett (55), Jake Locker (53) and Brock Huard (53).
“King” Felix Hernandez went 4-0, 1.08 in August, when he was the MLB Pitcher of the Month. So far in September, Hernandez is 0-3 with a 9.00 ERA.
READS OF THE WEEK
Thiel: Seahawks Take Cowboys To The Shed, 27-7: The nickname for the Seahawks secondary is Legion of Boom. An honorary membership is hereby extended to wide receiver Golden Tate. Remarkable as was the 27-7 outcome over the Dallas Cowboys Sunday at the Clink, the way it was administered was breathtaking an application of Northwest wood in the harshest way. None was more harsh than what was delivered by Tate to Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee, who was jacked so high there was concern that Lee might suffer burns upon re-entry into the earths atmosphere . . . MORE
Thiel: Another Arena Vote, Another Beer To Cheer: Sitting in the the back of a still-empty McRorys restaurant, apart from the growing Pioneer Square din, Chris Hansen was approached by a staffer packing a smart phone and a big grin. Hansens observers in city hall texted that city councils finance committee voted 7-0 with one abstention to move along the arena deal for a vote of the full council . . . MORE
Thiel: Changing Of Seahawks Guards Aids Wilson: Looking back on the opener, the Seahawks went a rookie too far. No, it wasnt necessarily quarterback Russell Wilson. But right guard J.R. Sweezy didnt have much business starting in an offensive line that was the most surprising disappointment in the loss at Arizona. It wont be a problem Sunday John Moffitt will be starting at right guard attempting to annoy the Dallas Cowboys . . . MORE
Thiel: An Epiphany In The History Of Seattle Sports: To all the supporters of his basketball/hockey arena project, Chris Hansen Tuesday offered what is believed to be a first in the history of American pro sports would-be ownership (digital era): An invitation to readers of his arena website: Beers on me . . . MORE
Wayback Machine: Pint-Sized Eddie Taylor: In the spring of 1950, figuring it was high time, Emmett Watson of The Seattle Times wrote the equivalent of a sports page ode to Eddie Taylor, a pint-sized coach who had labored for many years ultimately under five managers for the Seattle Indians and Seattle Rainiers. As was Watsons bent, he went without a long preamble and got straight to the point . . . MORE
Thiel: As Well As Beaten, Seahawks Were Beat Up: RT Russell Okung has only a bone bruise on his right knee and may be able to play Sunday against the Dallas Cowboys, but WR Doug Baldwin had his front teeth knocked out and WR Charly Martin remains hospitalized in Phoenix with a collapsed lung . . . MORE
Hickey: New Rule Has Mariners Pick Closer To Bigs: If Mike Zunino comes to the Mariners spring training camp in 2013 with a chance to make the big league roster, will you be surprised? . . . MORE
That Was The Week That Was (Sept. 3-9): Pete Carrolls Seahawks squandered a season opener they should have won, Steve Sarkisians Huskies predictably got inhaled at LSU, Washington State needed a wide receiver as a defensive replacement to ensure Mike Leachs first win with the Cougars, and the Sounders won a thriller at CenturyLink Field . . . MORE
“We have some really cool ideas about things we can do to show the NBA that Seattle is a city that wants and deserves a team back” — Chris Hansen, investor, after he came to agreement with the Seattle City Council on changing the deal to fund a $490 basketball/hockey arena in Sodo
“Your voices were heard and your hearts spoke volumes. I really all hope you all just appreciate how much it meant and what a difference each and every one of you made” — Chris Hansen, in a statement on his website, thanking supporters of a $390 million arena he intends to build in Sodo
“I got no excuses for that fly ball. I was running on my heels and when you’re running on your heels there’s nothing you can do. Your head is moving. I should have made that catch. It just happens” — Franklin Gutierrez, Mariners outfielder, after committing his first error in three years Tuesday
“We need to be tougher in the fourth quarter. I’d say it’s about as simple as that. We need to quit entertaining fatigue. I think we tell ourselves we’re fatigued long before we’re actually fatigued. Part of being fatigued is a decision. We’re jumping on the fatigue bandwagon way too quick” — Mike Leach, WSU football coach, after the Cougars escaped Las Vegas with a 35-27 win over UNLV Friday
“There needs to be a lot of focus on that eighth inning, because I can’t count how many things we did wrong, which is disappointing at this time of the year. Defensively, pitch selection, just making plays in general. It sped up on some of our younger kids. Things like that just can’t happen, especially when you’re playing a team like Texas that is a good club playing good baseball. When you do that, they’re going to run over you, and that’s what happened tonight” — Eric Wedge, Mariners manager, after his bullpen allowed seven runs in the eighth inning of a 9-3 loss to Texas Friday
“When you have a week like we had last week, you can get a little tentative and gun-shy and concerned about the way you are playing the game. And I thought our guys came out with a great deal of energy and great execution to start the ballgame” — Steve Sarkisian, UW football coach, after his team’s 52-13 win over Portland State