Saturday, February 12, 2005
"The NCAA is the devil, son" an emotional Quin Snyder said to one of his players. "Come with me, as I will take you to a place called Mercer Island."
Missouri's Thomas Gardner with a 13-year old kid posing as a Mizzou student
COLLEGE BASKETBALL, IT'S OUTSTANDING, IT'S ALL ABOUT THE O, BABY!!!
Saunders is coming off a 2003-2004 season in which he led the Timberwolves to the Western Conference Finals. The Timberwolves are currently 11 1/2 games behind the Sonics in the Northwest Division and are 9th in the Western Conference. Vice president of basketball operations Kevin McHale will coach the Timberwolves for the remainder of the season.
The trading deadline is February 24, so the Timberwolves may not be done making changes.
The Seahawks have gained permission to speak to New England Patriots vice president of player personnel Scott Pioli about their team president vacancy.
(Seattle Times and Boston Globe)
While I've done a long case detailing Randy Mueller, I don't think I'll do one on Scott Pioli. The reason is because before this weekend I didn't think there would be a chance in hell that the Seahawks could land Pioli. Here's all you need to know about Pioli right now:
---3 World Championships in the last 4 seasons
But this piece of news got me to thinking about January 1999, when Mike Holmgren was hired. At the time, I would venture to guess that the majority of the Seahawks fanbase was shocked by the hiring of Holmgren, a Super Bowl champion just two years before coming to Seattle. Do I think Pioli is coming to Seattle? I don't see it, only because of his ties to Bill Belichick. However, since the Super Bowl, the Patriots have lost both their offensive and defensive coordinators (Charlie Weis and Romeo Crennel), their chief operating officer Andy Wasynczuk (who left for a position at Harvard), and could possibly lose their defensive backs coach to take over the defensive coordinator job in Miami or Cleveland (Eric Mangini).
Stay tuned, because after all this time, maybe there was a reason why the Seahawks have waited until mid-February to hire a team president.
Edited at 9:45 a.m. Pacific
Sports and Bremertonians: No Respect 1/26/05
Sports and Bremertonians: Patriot Reign 1/28/05
CBS Sportsline: Patriots proving to be model franchise 12/3/03
Boston Globe: Pioli and Belichick a nice team 1/26/04
Boston Globe: Success gives Pioli staying power 2/5/05
Boston Herald: Pats spell it all out:Choose words wisely 2/6/05
For the random note here...did anyone out there encounter carpet gymansium floors back in elementary school? Though as a youngster I thought they weren't too bad, since they seemed much warmer than tile floor or hardwood to sit on, I fail to see the positives to having a carpet gym floor. Surely it's not good if it somehow tears. Surely if there was too much perspiration dripping into the carpet gym floor, the floor would need an all-out periodic shampooing, rather than just a mopping like a hardwood floor would need.
Now to the usual...
Jeremy posted here about the Richie Sexson DUII citation already yesterday.
As we aren't speculating anything regarding the Sexson DUII citation, I will merely show two things, both factual. One is the signature that appeared on Sexson's on-scene citation, the other is the signature on the shirt I took to FanFest. I should also note that the officer's writing in the citation (it's a PDF file on the KGW page that Jeremy linked) is just horrid, and that Sexson at FanFest was one of those autograph signers that attempts to slow it down a bit to make sure some of the consonants are actually half-readable for the fans.
Now the Seahawks' search for a president might finally be getting interesting. Though it's only sources that are moving this information along, it appears that Scott Pioli from the Patriots just might be attracting the Seahawks' eye. It's shooting the moon, but why not? Let's give it a whirl and see what happens. Hopefully they have decent enough backup plans if this possible Pioli pursuit goes awry or goes on too long.
The Marvin Williams Watch
The Tar Heels go to Hartford and face Connecticut tomorrow (10a, CBS), then go back home Wednesday for Virginia (4p, ESPN)
Bobby Jones is getting some praise after his gutty production in the Oregon game while being quite ill. Still, the Huskies are returning to the place in Corvallis where, one year ago, the Huskies effectively began their crazy run. The Huskies had a run nearly reminiscent to me of that local baseball team that did that thing in 1995. One main difference, though, is that the Huskies' follow-up year is turning out way better than the Mariners' 1996 season.
The Huskies face Oregon State tomorrow (1p, FSNNW) before going to Wazzu the following Saturday (4p, FSNNW)
The Zags move over to LA to face Loyola Marymount tonight (FSNNW Seattle, Q6 NBC Spokane)
For my take on last night's game, scroll down a post or click here if you're reading the only post on the page.
Yes, the Sonics managed to hold Phoenix scoreless for two minutes late in the fourth quarter last night. Of course, this was leaps and bounds better than when the same two teams met in Seattle, and the Sonics blew a late seven-point lead. It wasn't easy either, and not just because of the gameplay itself. The Sonics got in pretty late because not only was it a back-to-back, they had to fly to Phoenix from Seattle right after having a 7:30 game on TNT. That's rough. Still, they got two wins in one of the tougher back-to-back sets on their schedule this season.
The Sonics have weathered off half of the Danny Fortson suspension as well.
Tomorrow vs. Dallas (5p, FSNNW)
Wednesday vs. Golden State (6p, FSNNW)
Tri-City beat Everett 2-1. The Silvertips had their four-game win streak snapped. Zach Sim scored the only Silvertip goal, in the first period. The Americans won the game on a power-play goal off an untimely late charging penalty on Mitch Love. Everett was badly outshot 44-27. Mike Wall stopped 42 for the Silvertips.
Portland beat Spokane 4-3 in overtime. Two ties, no lead changes. The Winter Hawks scored in every period, including the overtime. They had a 2-0 lead early in the second period after power-play goals by Kyle Bailey and Darrell May. Spokane tied it late in the second period. Portland hit paydirt again thanks to a Cameron Cepek goal with 4:31 left in regulation. That was answered 1:25 later. In overtime, Brandon Dubinsky got the winner on a breakaway to give Portland its sixth win in seven games. Shots were 31 apiece. Blake Grenier stopped 28 for Portland.
Manitoba beat Saint John's 4-3 in a shootout. Manitoba scored the first goal of the game, and Saint John's answered. Repeat that pattern three times, and that's how it ended up even after overtime. Of course, the fun thing was that there were fights after the first four goals in the game. Either way, Peter Sarno and Jesse Schultz scored for the Moose in the first period, and Lee Goren scored for the Moose in the second period. Kevin Bieksa, Jason King, and Josh Green were able to get the Moose the win in the shootout. Manitoba outshot the Leafs 38-30, and Wade Flaherty stopped 27.
Portland and Puget Sound skated to a 2-2 overtime tie. Portland's Andy Gorski and Puget Sound's Iggy Slepokourev put on a goalie exhibition after all four goals were scored in the first period. Mike Truex scored to tally his 99th point of the season right out of the gate, and Luke Winkelman scored to get the Tomahawks a 2-0 lead before the Pioneers scored twice in 23 seconds, when Mats Papista and Riley Patterson were both recipients of opportune passes right in front of the net. The Tomahawks remain one point behind the Pioneers for the division title and a first-round playoff bye with only tonight's game remaining on the regular season schedule.
Tonight: Everett at Seattle, Portland at Tri-City, Vancouver at Spokane, Manitoba at Saint John's, Portland at Puget Sound
Tomorrow: Spokane at Everett
Tuesday: Red Deer at Portland
Wednesday: Seattle at Kelowna, Red Deer at Vancouver
Friday: Red Deer at Seattle, Prince George at Everett, Spokane at Portland, Kamloops at Vancouver, Edmonton at Manitoba
Have a great Saturday and a happy rest of the weekend, everyone.
Man, what a huge win for the Sonics, and it's true on many fronts. It was the tail end of a back-to-back. It was on the road. It was against Phoenix, the second-best team recordwise in the conference. It also avenged the home loss to Phoenix on ESPN earlier in the season; the game where they coughed up that late 7-point lead.
I saw most of the first quarter and listened to the rest of the first quarter, but was not around for the other three quarters. From that limited experience, I can say that the Sonics started out something like 1-for-5 from the field -- they really didn't start out great. The odd thing is that they really ramped it up and ended the quarter having shot an insane 14-for-23 (61%). They took a 33-29 lead into the second quarter.
I guess I'll just draw my other conclusions after the Peek.
PEEK AT THE BOXSCORE
Rashard Lewis 23 pts/8 reb/3 ast (8-19 FG, 4-7 3pt, 3-4 free throws), Ray Allen 21 pts/4 reb/3 ast (8-24 FG, 3-8 3pt, 2-2 free throws), Luke Ridnour 12 pts/2 reb/5 ast (5-10 FG, 1-3 3pt), Reggie Evans 10 pts/11 reb (4-6 FG, 2-3 free throws)
Antonio Daniels 20 pts/3 reb/3 ast (7-12 FG, 1-4 3pt, 5-7 free throws), Vladimir Radmanovic 13 pts/6 reb/3 stl (4-6 FG, 3-5 3pt, 2-4 free throws), Nick Collison 2 pts/4 reb (1-5 FG, 14 min, fouled out), Ron Murray (0-2 FG, 6 min)
Jerome James Watch
12 pts/7 reb/2 blk (6-7 FG, 1 turnover, 4 fouls, 21 min)
shot 43-for-91 (47.3%) from the field, shot 12-for-28 (42.9%) from downtown, shot 15-for-22 (68.2%) from the line, outrebounded Phoenix 45-39, had 23 second-chance points (Suns had 9), bench outscored Phoenix bench 35-7 (outrebounded them 13-2)
What I don't show is the number of minutes on the Suns' starters, which for the record is 41 (Johnson), 40 (Nash), 40 (Richardson), 39 (Stoudemire), 38 (Marion). The Suns can't possibly keep going on like this, and I think they know that, which is why they got Walter McCarty on board, who did see some time in this game. Still, Mike D'Antoni is going to have to find more minutes for Jimmy Jackson, McCarty, and whatever rest of the bench they have if he plans on the magnificent starting five having any energy past about late next month. They are going to get dog-tired if they keep running out there in the high 30s for minutes every night.
Of course, anything of what Phoenix does in the playoffs might be moot since they're definitely not a halfcourt team. Anyone that remembers the Kemp/Payton-era Sonics remembers mission-in-transition basketball and also remembers dreading playoff basketball because the Sonics were nowhere near as good when they had to execute in the halfcourt sets.
Thank goodness this year's Sonics can play in the halfcourt, because I think it suits them really well come playoff time. Phoenix...not so much.
Oh, the Sonics' numbers. Ray Allen had a crappy shooting night, but 14 of his 21 were in the fourth quarter. Rashard Lewis had another solid night. Luke Ridnour had a decent night.
Antonio Daniels had his second monster night in a row. Twenty in this game after having 18 big ones the night before. Great stuff. Vladimir Radmanovic had a much better night in this game than the night before, though he only shot six times from the floor. Still, he cashed in for 13, but had a nice line with 6 boards and 3 steals. He also chipped in a token assist and block.
Of course, one of the first questions that comes to mind is where Fortson's minutes went, seeing as to how he's suspended and all. Vitaly didn't come off the bench, so they didn't go to him. Collison only played 14 minutes and used all his fouls.
It appears that Jerome James got the bulk of Fortson's minutes, and he made them some quite productive minutes. Really, rightfully so for Jerome, who was nationally praised for saving Fortson's flung chair from hitting someone. His 12 points tied a season best, and his 7 boards was a season best tonight. I was watching that first quarter, and I saw Jerome sitting there at the top of the key. When I saw him spy that open lane, then drive and pack it, holy crap. I was thinking about celebrating or something.
I can't let Reggie Evans' double-double go unnoticed. It was a great night for the Sonics' starters in the frontcourt in general. Usually it's a great night for the Sonics' frontcourt when it's Lewis, Evans, and Radmanovic or Fortson off the bench. Tonight, Jerome James was productive. It's nice to see. Of course, my moment of Jerome James enjoyment is at the old Peja Drobnjak site in one of the old ads. James comes up to Drobnjak wearing a monster costume, and eventually James takes off the mask to reveal his identity. Drobnjak says, "put that back on, Jerome. You're scaring me."
I'd also be remiss to not say that the Sonics had seven guys score in double figures. Nicely done.
But what a great win by the Sonics. I saw this Sacramento/Phoenix back-to-back on the schedule last month and I was afraid of it. Of course, that partially had to do with the type of basketball I was seeing the Sonics play in January, which wasn't very good. Now, they've won five straight, and these last two were great wins.
I asked Jinkies what his favorite thing to do in Phoenix is. His response: "I am very tired now. I have chased a mouse the size of a cake for all night. Please write back when I am rested."
Friday, February 11, 2005
It's just one of the promotions to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the magical 1995 season. I'll never forget Jay Buhner's thoughts on those jerseys.
"There's no way we're playing in those softball uniforms again. No way."
The Mariners didn't wear the teal jerseys after August 27, when they lost 5-2 to the Yankees. I was at that game sitting in the 300 level at the Kingdome. It was Mother's Cookies Trading Cards Day. Those were the days, man. Going around the ballpark asking random people if they had a Chad Kreuter card to trade me. I know I had multiple Joey Cora cards. BRILLIANT!
If the Mariners REALLY want to turn back the clock, then they should bring back the cultural fest known as Trading Cards Day. Of course, some poor kid may get stuck with 8 extra Willie Bloomquist cards and he wouldn't be able to get rid of them. I'd hate to see that happen.
Let's just be glad that the Mariners aren't turning AHEAD the clock. Remember those godawful space-age uniforms? You know, the unis with the big compass rose on the jerseys?
Softball jerseys, bad!
Mother's Cookies Trading Cards, good!
OBEY MY DOG!
Sexson pleaded innocent Wednesday (Feb. 9) on charges of DUI and failing to acquire a Washington vehicle license. Gregory Chaney, a Clark County sheriff's deputy, said that Sexson was speeding "like a bat out of hell". His speed was estimated to be 50 mph in a 35 mph zone, Chaney said.
Here at Sports and Bremertonians, we will not speculate on this case. We are not experts on the law. Hopefully in the next few weeks, we'll be able to post positive stories about the Mariners. Certainly, this story isn't one of them.
By the way, we ask that all of you keep your comments clean. This is a very serious issue and we expect our readers to be adults. Most of you, anyway.
But now, I'm at least one Sonic game post into feeling a ton better, and this here should be my first big daily post back.
Also, if you're in Kitsap County tonight, the Puget Sound Tomahawks need all the fan support they can get tonight and tomorrow night at the Bremerton Ice Arena. They need a win and a tie to claim a division title and a first-round bye in the NorPac playoffs, and they'll be trying to knock off the current first-place team, the Portland Pioneers.
For the random note...pot pies are my vice. The brand of pies that got me into the whole pot pie mess were Swanson, though when faced with more pressing circumstances (i.e., price) I've been known to go with a Banquet or even a store brand. Go the Costco route and they have 8-packs of Marie Callendar's and those things are pretty good too. Though I never have the patience for it, they're better when they baked in the conventional oven rather than microwaved. When microwaved, I usually try to overshoot whatever it says on the box by a little so that my pie is as done as possible. Inevitably, I'll get some doneness and almost burntness in a spot or two, but the middle will still have that mushy crust and it'll tick me off, but unless I want to throw it in the oven for 40 minutes, I just shut up and deal with my instant taste gratification. Also, I did chronicle it once last year, but if you're going to mix two different flavors of pot pie, don't mix beef with anything. Mixing chicken with turkey is okay, but beef and one of the other kinds turned out with much-less-than-desired results for me back at school. Not good times.
It's good to be back.
We're at about 5 days remaining until pitchers and catchers report in Peoria.
As a matter of fact, we still have photos stashed away from last year when P's and C's reported. For instance, here we have Wiki Gonzalez having one of many heart-to-heart talks with some instructional dummy.
As posted by Jeremy yesterday, Bob Casullo is the new special teams coach for the Seahawks. The angle for the article is pretty funny -- it's not all the time you run into a guy that just wants to be the best damn special teams coach around rather than gunning for any head coach opportunity he can find. Apparently Casullo and Mark Michaels (now fired) were close after interviews last offseason, but Michaels' working under Pete Rodriguez got him the edge. This year, we try a different flavor. Hopefully one that gets better field position.
The Marvin Williams Watch
The Tar Heels go to Hartford and face Connecticut on Sunday (10a, CBS), then it's back home Wednesday against Virginia (4p, ESPN)
They came out of McArthur Court with a 95-88 overtime road win and a 20-win season. Will Conroy scored eight straight Husky points in regulation to force overtime, and Brandon Roy added seven in overtime to seal it.
The Huskies are in Corvallis on Sunday to face Oregon State (1p, FSNNW) before going to Pullman and facing Wazzu the following Saturday (4p, FSNNW)
Gonzaga is all alone in first place in the West Coast Conference after their 82-75 victory at Pepperdine. JP Batista didn't have as much of a monster night, though he did have his 10 and 7. The monster nights were from Ronny Turiaf (officially back) with 20 and 12 boards, and Erroll Knight with 14 and 11 assists. Derek Raivio nailing five three-pointers also helped, along with Adam Morrison's 19 and 7 boards.
Just a philosophical question -- would it be easier to root for your team if it were called the Waves or the Green Wave?
The Zags move over to LA to face Loyola Marymount tomorrow (FSNNW Seattle, Q6 NBC Spokane)
For my take on the game, scroll down a post or click here if this post is the only one in your browser.
There was a good deal of "drama" in the game's first three quarters in terms of lead changes and ties, but it didn't really get dicey until the fourth quarter and the Webber/Fortson incident. I said it in the game post, but I'll say it again -- the Kings had just fallen into the penalty at that point in the game, and the Sonics could have had an easy way to win the game just by pounding the ball to Fortson down low and having him put up a shot and get hacked every trip down the floor. Instead, he gets tossed, Vlad Radmanovic is cold, and things get interesting because you have to think of a different way to win. That's where Antonio Daniels, Nick Collison, and Rashard Lewis stepped up in the final quarter.
Tonight at Phoenix (6p, FSNNW)
Sunday vs. Dallas (5p, FSNNW)
Wednesday vs. Golden State (6p, FSNNW)
As for any possibilities of an NHL season, well, they're toast. By this point, I've noticed that TSN has been using the same exact picture of Bill Daly with pursed lips in every one of these articles.
In Bizarro NHL (i.e., EA Sports NHL 2005 on Easy mode with auto shot aim), the Vancouver Canucks are 47-6-0-3 at the All-Star break. Brendan Morrison leads the team in scoring with 69 points. Markus Naslund and Todd Bertuzzi (EA didn't suspend him) are skating with Morrison on the top line. Jason King is skating with the Sedins, and the chemistry factor is full with that line.
I've played a couple games in the three European leagues they have in the video game too, but what they should really do is get the rosters of all those Euro teams with the NHL guys and then make a video game out of that. That'd be awesome. I want MoDo from Sweden with everybody and their mother playing for it. In NHL 2005, I don't get the benefit of Naslund, the Sedins, Peter Forsberg, et al., on my MoDo team.
The Thunderbirds are hoping their good defensive play is close to full form heading into the stretch run. They've lost four straight and seven of ten.
Tonight: Tri-City at Everett, Spokane at Portland, Manitoba at Saint John's, Portland at Puget Sound
Tomorrow: Everett at Seattle, Portland at Tri-City, Vancouver at Spokane, Manitoba at Saint John's, Portland at Puget Sound
Sunday: Spokane at Everett
Tuesday: Red Deer at Portland
Wednesday: Seattle at Kelowna, Red Deer at Vancouver
Have a great Friday. A great weekend to all that aren't able to stick with us through the weekend.
Thursday, February 10, 2005
(final content posted ~12:16a)
Here's what I have for tonight's nationally televised game.
Brad Miller is not playing as a result of his reaction to the blocked (or goaltended) layup that ended the Phoenix/Sacto game.
8:35 Ridnour three to TIE 9-9. 7:30 Evans offensive board, fakes Ostertag, lays in TIE 11-11. 4:53 Allen hits 2nd of 7 out of the timeout TIE 13-13. 2:56 Radmanovic baseline layup and foul SAC 19-17. 1:33 Allen three SAC 26-22. 1:02 Lewis underneath low SAC 26-24. 0:40.5 Daniels midrange SAC 28-26.
After one quarter -- Kings 28, SuperSonics 26
Quite the fast first quarter there. The Sonics weren't shooting too well to start out, but things eventually got more even. Along with the fast pace, there was a lot of back-and-forth play going on, and Chris Webber played almost all of the first quarter. Reggie Evans also had a share of rebounds too (8), unsurprisingly.
11:24 Collison low hook SAC 30-28. 10:51 Allen three SEA 31-30. 9:56 Allen warming up...another three SEA 34-32. 9:04 Radmanovic to rack hacked before slam SEA 36-32. 8:29 Ridnour midrange SEA 38-35. 6:20 Radmanovic nice pass low Collison layup SEA 42-37. 5:12 lefty hook Collison SEA 44-40. 3:11 Lewis offensive board, goes up, fouled by Ostertag, hits both SEA 46-45. 1:57 Fortson fouled low, hits both SEA 48-47. 1:27 Kings over limit, Allen to line SEA 50-49. 0:57.4 Allen pull-up TIE 52-52. 0:27.1 baseline stepback Lewis SEA 54-52.
Halftime -- SuperSonics 54, Kings 52
It's an entertaining and intriguing game, at least. The teams look quite evenly matched, the lead has changed hands a number of times, and nobody has really pulled away. As such, there have been no really huge runs. Ray Allen started off a bit cold but warmed up and leads all scorers at half. I'm not sure Reggie Evans even stepped onto the court in the second quarter, because his rebound count was still stuck at 8. Vladimir Radmanovic has started out 1-for-6, which is a bit disturbing. Allen scored 19 points, but no other Sonic has scored more than Rashard Lewis, and he only had 8. That's not exactly balance in the scoring. The Sonics also only have 5 assists at half, which is brutal in itself.
Yet the Sonics still have a slim lead at half. They haven't let Stojakovic and Webber get too hot, though Cuttino Mobley has done some damage. While we don't hope for Stojakovic to have his back lock up on him or for Chris Webber to bust a knee, we do hope they get quite tired in the coming quarters.
9:38 so much for that game of no runs; Sacto is on a 8-0 run to start the half. 9:10 Make that 11-0. 8:51 Evans offensive board, back up and hacked, hits one SAC 63-55. 8:18 Allen to James layup SAC 66-57. 8:04 Webber steamrolls Evans, turnover. 7:57 Lewis three SAC 66-60. 7:25 Allen sticks one SAC 66-62. 6:06 Allen off the inbound for three SAC 68-67. 5:15 Ridnour baseline jumper SEA 69-68 (14-2 run). 4:33 trailing James slam TIE 71-71. 2:34 leaning Allen baseline TIE 75-75. 2:22 Sonics over limit. 2:07 Daniels running layup TIE 77-77. 1:17 Kings over limit, but Evans to line, misses both.
After three quarters -- Kings 81, SuperSonics 77
The Kings are shooting 51%. The Sonics still haven't stopped Cuttino Mobley, who now has 25. The Sonics thankfully answered the Kings' sizable run that kicked off the second half. Rashard Lewis has managed to get himself into double figures, though no other Sonics have joined them in the double-figure scoring parade. Of course, the fact that Jerome James played much of the third quarter and Vladimir Radmanovic didn't get off the bench until there were just over three minutes to go in the third.
11:21 Daniels steals bad pass, slams in transition TIE 81-81. 9:47 Daniels sticks midrange SAC 86-85. 9:18 Lewis splits defenders in post, lays in and fouled, hits TIE 88-88. 8:05 Kings already over the limit, Lewis hits both SAC 92-90. 7:09 Fortson and Webber have some words, technicals. Fortson tossed. 6:46 Daniels slashes to glass, lays in SAC 95-92. 6:36 Lewis steals the inbound, fouled on way to glass hits one, Collison gets loose ball, ball circles perimeter, Lewis three SEA 96-95 (!!!). 5:37 Allen baseline TIE 98-98. 4:23 Webber three, Daniels plowed off the ball, SAC 101-98. 4:06 Collison steals offensive board, lays in SAC 101-100. 3:51 Sonics over limit. 3:05 Collison intercepts, hits Daniels for a transition slam SAC 103-102. 2:35 Lewis intercepts pass, eventually drives into Songaila and Webber, lays in, fouled, hits SEA 105-103. 1:47 Radmanovic fouled in backcourt after rebound SEA 107-103 (7-0 run). 1:30 Daniels give-and-go hits basket, somehow didn't count, nails both SEA 109-105. 0:54.5 Collison gets a nice feed low, lays in SEA 111-107. 0:34.9 Daniels fouled in backcourt SEA 113-107. 0:22.1 Allen fouled, hits both SEA 115-107. 0:18 Mobley misses a driving dunk
Final -- SuperSonics 115, Kings 107
You know, this might come off as gloating, but I just love it when one of my teams wins on national television. There were times tonight when I didn't think it would happen, but I'm glad it turned around in the Sonics' favor.
In the first half, I'd have to say the only time when any team was really out in front by any semi-sizable lead was when the Kings jumped out to something like a 7-2 lead really early. In the second half, the only time it got out of hand was when the Kings came out of the locker room at halftime and reeled off an 11-0 run to get a nine-point lead.
Then that set up the fourth quarter. I've got a pretty big sort of in-game paragraph on it, and I usually don't like to go too nutty with those things, but it was a packed fourth quarter.
Antonio Daniels was great cutting to the basket in the fourth quarter, and really gave the spark off the bench that Vladimir Radmanovic wasn't giving tonight. Nick Collison had some huge offensive boards down low, and his biggest play might have been when he came up with the loose ball after Lewis' missed free throw. He kicked it out to the perimeter, and it went all the way around to Lewis in the corner, and he sank the three, which gave the Sonics the lead, and really got the crowd officially into it. The crowd got into it when Chris Webber and Danny Fortson had words, and Fortson got tossed. Fortson also tipped over a chair with force on his way to the locker room, though it was nicely caught by Jerome James before it may have hit someone in photographers' row.
The Fortson/Webber thing sure got the crowd into it bigtime, and it seemed to spark the team in a weird way. In another way, it added a new wrinkle to the game, because about a minute earlier (I have 8:05 to go), the Kings were already over the limit. Of course, this is where I would suggest to pump the ball down low to Fortson every time, have him go up and get hacked, and have him nail two free throws every trip down the floor.
Taking that into account, the Sonics had to find some other way to beat the Kings down the stretch. Two defensive stops sure helped. Better yet, they were two turnovers. Nick Collison was able to intercept a pass that was cashed in by Daniels with a slam. Rashard Lewis intercepted a pass the next trip down the floor and eventually got it back for a layup and one, and the Sonics had the lead for good.
Looking back at that fourth quarter in-game paragraph, I seem to see a lot of Daniels, Collison, and Lewis. Ray Allen didn't pop up too many times in my fourth-quarter stuff, but he'd more than done his job in the first three quarters.
Vladimir Radmanovic never warmed up tonight, and I've said that already. I also noticed that Luke Ridnour didn't get a lot of minutes in the second half, and definitely the fourth quarter, but that'll happen when Daniels warms up like he did. Still, there were times when the Sonics were having Lewis play the 2, and having (before the ejection) something like Radmanovic, Collison, and Fortson in the other three spots. It was interesting to see Coach McMillan trotting out some different sets of five, to say the least.
PEEK AT THE BOXSCORE
Ray Allen 34 pts/4 reb/3 ast (10-23 FG, 4-8 3pt, 10-10 free throws), Rashard Lewis 23 pts/7 reb/2 ast/2 stl (7-16 FG, 2-3 3pt, 7-8 free throws), Luke Ridnour 9 pts/5 ast (4-10 FG, 1-3 3pt, 26 min), Reggie Evans 6 pts/12 reb (2-2 FG, 2-6 free throws)
Antonio Daniels 18 pts/3 ast (6-13 FG, 6-6 free throws), Nick Collison 10 pts/6 reb/2 stl (5-8 FG), Vladimir Radmanovic 9 pts/9 reb/3 ast (1-8 FG, 0-5 3pt, 7-7 free throws), Danny Fortson 2 pts/4 reb (17 min, tossed)
Jerome James Watch
4 pts/3 reb (trailed for a nice dunk, saved Fortson's chair from more damage, 2-4 FG, 16 min)
shot 37-for-84 (44%) from the field, shot 7-for-21 (33.3%) from downtown, shot 34-for-39 (87.2%) from the free-throw line (Reggie Evans missed four of those), badly outrebounded Sacramento 46-33, forced 11 turnovers (turned the ball over 6 times), bench outscored Sacto bench 39-16 (outrebounded them 20-5)
Okay, so I've taken a while with this. Though the postgame stuff before the peek is pretty much original, I eventually caved and listened to some outside material, namely the likes of Barkley, Smith, Kerr, and Locke. But David Locke had a great point. The Sonics don't win games when Vladimir Radmanovic does 1-for-8 from the floor. Of course, he mentioned in times past, if Vlad shot that badly from the floor, he probably wouldn't be pulling down 9 rebounds either. That's really encouraging to see him not only pull down nine boards, but also hit on all 7 chances from the free-throw line. Great stuff.
Yeah, I know we're barely past the halfway point, and I know they didn't have Brad Miller. But hey, the Sonics took that season series, and they did it on national TV.
It's a great win.
On behalf of Jeremy, I asked Jinkies if Chris Webber needed another timeout. His reply: "Yes, I am without the claws, but don't get any mental ideas."
Waltz will call the Marlins games for FSN Florida, along with color analyst Tommy Hutton. This is a well-deserved honor for Waltz, who has been in the business for a while. I've met the man on a few occasions and he's certainly earned respect in my book.
Best of luck to Rich in South Florida.
Casullo spent the 2004 season with the New York Jets as their tight ends coach. He was the Oakland Raiders special teams coach from 2000 to 2003. In his final season in Oakland (2003), the Raiders' special teams unit was 2nd in the AFC and 3rd in the NFL in punt return average with an average of 12.9 yards. It didn't hurt Casullo that kicker Sebastian Janikowski and punter Shane Lechler were part of his special teams unit.
All that I ask from Casullo is that the kickoff and punt return coverage improves in 2005. That goes without saying, however.
In other news, here's a list of free agents throughout the NFL at ESPN.com. I'll have my 2005 Seahawks offseason plan posted in the next 2 weeks. Free agency begins March 2.
ROCK THE PADRES
I voted for Gary Hoey's song, "Go Padres!". Hoey had a hit in 1993 with "Hocus Pocus". If I had to pick one mainstream song that should be the 2005 San Diego Padres theme song, you can't go wrong with AC/DC's "Givin' The Dog A Bone".
Voting ends this Sunday at 11:59 p.m. Pacific.
At this point, Freddie Mitchell is above Terrell Owens on the "most hated players in football" list. Of course, that's the only thing "Fred Ex" is above T.O. on.
On Wednesday, Mitchell need no such podium to take more shots at the NFL champions.
"It was kind of like me being facetious and kidding around. They blew it way out of proportion," Mitchell said of his pregame comments. "[Their reactions] reminded me of little girls. They're sensitive. Real, real sensitive.
"Now the thing that bothers me the most is you've got everybody talking now. ... I've got [Patriots coach Bill] Belichick even throwing remarks about me. It's like, 'Man, did I hurt you that bad that you have to go out and shout my name?' Troy Brown saying something, Mr. Belichick saying a little something. It's funny how I got under their skin."
Mitchell wasn't able to get "under their skin" on the field, however, with just one reception for 11 yards. He had one fewer catch than Harrison, who intercepted Donovan McNabb twice.
But to hear Mitchell on Wednesday, even that wasn't his fault. Mitchell argued that the surprising play of Terrell Owens contributed to his own minimal contribution.
"T.O., he came and did an excellent job ... but that really took away from my play time and my opportunities," Mitchell said. "I couldn't shut a lot of people up that I wanted to shut up. That really hurt the situation."
Owens had nine catches for 122 yards in his first game since undergoing surgery six weeks ago for his severely injured ankle. Still, Mitchell is confident he'll get his chance to be "in the position to make a play or ... to be the marquee guy."
In the days since the Eagles loss, much of the media attention has shifted to McNabb and his teammates' claims he was sick to his stomach during the fourth quarter of the game.
Center Hank Fraley, in a TV interview, said that McNabb nearly puked in the huddle in the final minutes of the game and had trouble calling plays to the team. Fraley said at one point Mitchell had to call the play for McNabb.
Mitchell offered his take on what happened.
"Donovan, he dry heaves a lot when he gets under certain situations. It's happened before. It's happened in the NFC Championship game.
"He was dry heaving and he couldn't get the words out in the play, so he gave me hand signals. ... I basically called the play and knew what the coaches were thinking in that situation. I called the play out and went on from there."
--- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---
1. You do not disrespect the defending Super Bowl champions.
2. You do not disrespect the defending Super Bowl champions.
3. Terrell Owens is a much better football player than Freddie Mitchell.
4. Freddie Mitchell would have never gained an ounce of attention if it weren't for Owens getting hurt on Dec. 19 against Dallas.
5. Did this current bunch of Eagles ever get to the Super Bowl without Owens? I don't think so. (While Owens didn't play in the NFC playoffs, he was a huge reason why the Eagles were able to have homefield advantage.)
6. Mitchell's numbers in the 2003 NFC Championship Game against Carolina? 4 receptions, 38 yards. He didn't play in the 2002 NFC Championship Game against Tampa Bay, the last game in Veterans Stadium.
7. Tell me which first-round pick you would rather have on your team, McNabb or Mitchell?
8. 1 catch, 11 yards in Super Bowl XXXIX.
By the way, I don't want Freddie Mitchell in Seattle. He's the type of player I can't stand at all. What the hell has he done in the NFL since coming out of UCLA? Absolutely nothing. And yet he thinks he's so great?
The phrase "Philadelphia Freedom" doesn't apply to Freddie Mitchell.
Still, here's a somewhat shorter daily post, with hopefully a full one coming tomorrow.
Five years since the Griffey trade. I feel old. Look back with Art Thiel. I remember before Griffey held the Cincinnati-only gun to the Mariners' heads, there was a rumored (though risky) deal that would have swapped Griffey for Jim Edmonds, which would have put Junior in Anaheim. I also remember one of the other deals where Octavio Dotel was prominently involved.
According to Hickey, it appears the Mariners have not won the Jorge Campillo sweepstakes, but rather are in discussions with the intent of doing so.
Aaaaaand Zumsteg looks at the rest of the division.
The Seahawks might choose a special teams coach today to succeed the long line of successes such as Pete Rodriguez and Mark Michaels. Good luck to you, as yet unnamed coach.
Also, Jerheme Urban had foot surgery and Chike Okeafor wants to stay in Seattle.
The Marvin Williams Watch
They turned the ball over too much. Rashad McCants had a way-off night. Still, down one with about 15 ticks left on the clock, they could have won the game. They couldn't get a shot off, though. Still, Marvin Williams had 12 points, 5 rebounds, an assist, a steal, and a block in 25 minutes of play off the bench in North Carolina's 71-70 loss to Duke. Marvin is averaging 11.3 points and 6.7 boards a game. Drag that out to 30 minutes (more realistic than 40), and he's averaging 15.2 points and 9.1 rebounds a game.
The Tar Heels' competition doesn't let up, as they go to Hartford and face Connecticut on Sunday (10a, CBS), then it's back home Wednesday against Virginia (4p, ESPN)
Crap, the Oregon game is tonight? Man. That came up fast.
The Huskies travel into the Pit tonight to face Oregon (7:30p, FSNNW)
The Zags travel to Malibu to face Pepperdine tonight (8p, ESPN2) and to LA to face Loyola Marymount on Saturday (FSNNW Seattle, Q6 NBC Spokane)
Sonics and Kings, Sonics and Kings. Seems like the Kings had an easier time landing All-Stars when Mr. and Mrs. Christie were still around.
Tonight vs. Sacramento (7:30p, TNT)
Tomorrow at Phoenix (6p, FSNNW)
Spokane beat Seattle 4-2. Four straight losses for Seattle. They badly outshot the Chiefs 38-14, but it wasn't enough.
Everett beat Kelowna 1-0. HUGE win by Everett over a tough team. Zach Hamill scored the only goal halfway through the final period , and shots were predictably 19-16 (to Everett).
Calgary beat Vancouver 3-2. The Giants blew a one-goal lead in the third period. Conlan Seder accounted for the Giants' goals. Vancouver outshot Calgary 38-24.
Tomorrow: Tri-City at Everett, Spokane at Portland, Manitoba at Saint John's, Portland at Puget Sound
Saturday: Everett at Seattle, Portland at Tri-City, Vancouver at Spokane, Manitoba at Saint John's, Portland at Puget Sound
Have a fun Thursday, everyone.
Wednesday, February 09, 2005
Marvin Williams will be playing his first game against Duke tonight in Durham.
I have a feeling the Tar Heels-Blue Devils rivalry dwarfs the Bremerton-Central Kitsap rivalry, but that's just me.
Game is on ESPN at 6 p.m. Pacific. Like you have anything better to do tonight.
Miller is the newest member of the ABA's Arkansas Rimrockers. He had played for the Texas Tycoons after playing for the Minnesota Timberwolves last season. A first-round draft pick in 1992, Miller played for 6 teams in his NBA career (Suns, Pistons, Raptors, Mavericks, Kings, and Timberwolves).
As for the post title, here you go. Not only is it all about the O, it's all about Sabine Ehrenfeld. It's also all about Candice Michelle, she of the GoDaddy.com commercial (see David's post for more).
Yes, I just included the Overstock.com woman, the GoDaddy.com woman, and Oliver Miller in the same post. I'll just stop right here, right now.
Tuesday, February 08, 2005
Okay, I'm still not all the way back yet, so I don't feel like I can quite take all the time that I'd usually take when doing one of these. When I'm well, I plan to go back through and shore up the piece for this game.
That said, the Hornets hung with the Sonics past halftime until both teams realized which team on the court was the better team.
Some boxscore tidbits...
-- Danny Fortson and Ron Murray were quite productive in limited minutes
-- Rashard Lewis had an off night, far from All-Star calibre
-- Ray Allen had a great night, an All-Star calibre one, even
-- No starter played over 38 minutes, and Luke Ridnour played the 38 minutes
-- Reggie Evans grabbed another 14 boards. Ho hum
-- Eight points from Jerome James? Yikes
-- Four of the five shots that Vladimir Radmanovic made were from beyond the arc
-- The Sonics didn't shoot too well from the free-throw line
-- Robert Swift scored!
-- Jim Watson interviewed Mrs. Dickau
Though I'm keeping it short here tonight, I couldn't dare cheat anyone or myself out of the Jinkies question. I asked Jinkies what he thought of Dan Dickau's wife. His reply: "NO I did not steal and kill your parakeet. I think you accuse me just because I am now famous. How dare your face!"
You could stick me in a room with Kenny G playing his sax for 6 consecutive months and I still wouldn't do what this guy did.
Let it be stated for the record that this is the dumbest "fan" in the history of sports. Of course, he may have done the world a favor at the same time.
But why am I breaking my post silence?
Well, it's the uproar over the GoDaddy.com ads. Apparently it was pulled during the Super Bowl by Fox (via the NFL) before it could air a second time. Let's face it, the Fox network will air just about anything, so it's the NFL that pulled this ad.
Hilariously, the second airing of the ad would have been the second ad after the whistle for the final two-minute warning.
Anyway, here's what the founder of GoDaddy.com had to say about it.
...And here's what I'm sure many of you want to see again, even if you have already, the ad. Also featured is a 1:45 long version of the ad, which is a bit more gratuitous than what actually made it on the air.
Monday, February 07, 2005
"In this situation, other people like Brett Favre, they would have called him a warrior," Owens said. "For me, they said I was selfish. If I'm selfish, I'm selfish because I want to help my team win."
I take back the credit that I gave Owens last night. Owens has proven once again that he only cares about himself. Take the high road, Terrell. Let your play on the field speak for itself.
This is the difference between the Eagles and the New England Patriots. The Patriots players aren't worried about themselves, they are worried about the team. Then you have the Eagles, with Owens and Freddie Mitchell. Yes, the same Freddie Mitchell who had something for Rodney Harrison. One reception for 11 yards, that's all the former UCLA Bruin had for #37.
Screw you, Terrell. And son, you aren't a warrior. Not even close.
Sunday, February 06, 2005
(For my preview on Super Bowl XXXIX between the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles, click here)
New England 24, Philadelphia 21
Are the New England Patriots finally going to get the respect that they deserve?
You would think that there won't be any questions about their legacy after winning their 3rd world championship in the last 4 years. There will be comparisons of this current Patriots team to past dynasties, such as the mid-1990s Dallas Cowboys. But it is really pointless to compare teams of the past to the present.
Football fans should appreciate the New England Patriots. They are a team that plays the game the right way. A certain coach in their own division is famous for the line "you play to win the game". It so happens that the Patriots follow that mantra.
If it isn't obvious to any of our readers by now, I'm impressed by this run the Patriots are on. Since their 31-0 loss to the Buffalo Bills in the 2003 season opener, the Patriots are 34-3 in their last 37 games (playoffs included). They won an NFL-record 21 straight games before losing to Pittsburgh on Halloween. In this current climate of the NFL, that's one hell of a feat.
While I will never buy the Tom Brady/Joe Montana comparisons, Brady just gets the job done. He's 27 years old and he has 3 Super Bowl rings. Did I mention that he's 9-0 in his career in the postseason? He could have very well earned his 3rd Super Bowl MVP award tonight, but it went to his teammate Deion Branch, who caught 11 balls for 133 yards.
The Eagles hung with the Patriots for the first 3 quarters, but the Patriots' experience took over in the 4th quarter. I couldn't believe how awful the Eagles offense looked on their drive late in the 4th quarter. They were down 24-14, needing at least two possessions to score. For me, the game was absolutely over when Freddie Mitchell made his only catch of the game, a 11-yard completion, on 3rd and 10. What does Mitchell do? He's talking to one of the Patriots players. The guy hasn't learned a damn thing since his days at UCLA. By the way, his college coach was Bob Toledo. What an awful coach Toledo was. If that lone completion was what he had waiting for Rodney Harrison, then I'll be damned.
Speaking of annoying-as-hell Eagles receivers, I'll give credit where credit is due to Terrell Owens. He hasn't played since Dec. 19 and was able to play tonight. Owens didn't score a touchdown, but he did have 9 receptions for 122 yards. Although it was a valient effort, he won't be going back to Philadelphia with the Vince Lombardi Trophy. Oh, and I just heard Owens' comments after the game. Hey Terrell, you did a good job. But you didn't win the ballgame. Case closed.
If there's a single Philadelphia fan who boos Donovan McNabb after tonight, they need to be drug tested. When he was drafted by the Eagles in 1999, he was booed by a few Eagles fans in New York. Those same fans are probably kicking it with Ricky Williams out in California listening to Lenny Kravitz' "Baptism". McNabb was 30-for-51 with 357 yards, 3 touchdowns, and 3 interceptions. He did a credible job in getting the Eagles to their first Super Bowl since the 1980 season. But his effort wasn't good enough. Then again, he only went up against the best football team of the past decade.
Now that I've talked about the game, I'll talk about the off-the-field stuff, i.e the commercials, pregame show, and halftime show:
---My favorite commercial was the Tobasco commercial. Do I need to explain why?
---Gretchen Wilson wore a shirt that said "Music Mafia". Let me guess, does it have to do with fellow country artists Big & Rich? You know Big & Rich, they of the awful song "Save A Horse". It was only played 6,546,728 times last summer on the family of networks.
---The sound for the pregame show was horrific.
---Seeing Wilson, Charlie Daniels, Earth, Wind and Fire, and the Black Eyed Peas on the same stage was surreal. The only thing that was missing was John Mayer. Translation: The pregame show was awful.
---How about the halftime show with Paul McCartney? Yeah, I almost passed out after hearing "Hey Jude". But before "Hey Jude", McCartney threw the crowd a bone by playing "Live And Let Die". Next year's halftime show is in Detroit. I won't be shocked to see a Motown halftime show. I'm actually shocked that Metallica hasn't performed at a halftime show yet. But they're too offensive, Jeremy. Nonsense. They found themselves. And Lars Ulrich will play anywhere for a buck. Just like Gene Simmons. A Metallica/KISS halftime show, perhaps? I hope not, because KISS is one of the more overrated bands in rock history.
---Alicia Keys impressed me tonight with her rendition of "America The Beautiful". But seeing the kids from the Florida School for the Deaf and Blind was pretty powerful. The performance spoke for itself.
---Cris Collinsworth is a hack. Quit apologizing for the Eagles, Cris. They were 13-3, no matter what they did in their final 2 games.
---That moment with Bill Belichick and his father Steve was one hell of a moment.
And I'll end my Super Bowl post on that note. Jacksonville was able to pull off a Super Bowl and the New England Patriots are once again world champions.
Here's to next season, when the Seahawks hopefully play well enough to represent the NFC in Detroit's Ford Field on Feb. 5, 2006.
Okay, so I guess the toilet bowl thing is only if whatever ailment I have right now gets to the vomiting stage, which it hasn't, and I don't think it will get there either. I probably just cursed myself.
Random note...hmm...I guess maybe it's random because I won't relate to it in the post, but I totally fell asleep during the Ravens/Giants Super Bowl back in 2001. I believe the 2000 season was the same year where I was getting dropped off in Ellensburg the day after Thanksgiving and Snoqualmie Pass closed behind us. Luckily it wasn't me that had to find a way back to Bremerton.
On TV -- North Carolina at Florida State (11a, FSNNW)
Anybody remember when the Cactus League used to have a lot less teams in it? I do. What they should do is move the Diamondbacks to the Grapefruit League for spring training. When you go north for spring training, usually I think it should involve more distance than taking a bus from Tucson to Phoenix. I'm not sure why, but I was half-amazed a few years ago when a cousin of mine from Tucson told me that the park is sponsored by Tucson Electric rather than it being an Electric Park. It's sort of the same thing as with the Nippon Ham Fighters, who do not actually fight ham.
Come on, it's Super Bowl Sunday. Of course there's no Seahawk news. This hopefully will change at some point within my lifetime.
The Marvin Williams Watch
Yes, there's a piece at the UNC page called "What Can't Marvin Williams Do?" His response is that he can't beat Rashad McCants at video games.
The Tar Heels are in Tallahassee to face Florida State this morning (11a, FSNNW) and then have that game at Duke on Wednesday (6p, ESPN)
The Huskies finally solved UCLA for their 20th straight home win by a score of 82-70. Brandon Roy had a double-double with 20 points (16 in the second half) and 13 boards off the bench. They shot a horrible 28-for-74 from the floor, but had 22 offensive rebounds and were the beneficiary of 23 turnovers.
The Huskies travel into the Pit on Thursday to face Oregon (7:30p, FSNNW)
Gonzaga beat Santa Clara 92-75. Is it fair to say that Ronny Turiaf might finally have found his groove? He scored 22 to go with 8 boards, and also went to the line for 14 shots. JP Batista had another great game, netting a double-double with 19 points and 10 boards. Also with a double-double was Derek Raivio, who had 10 assists to go with his 19 points. It kinda makes you notice Erroll Knight's scoreless night in 23 minutes a little less. The Zags made good on 13 of 19 shots to start the second half and pull away.
The Zags travel to Malibu to face Pepperdine on Thursday (8p, ESPN2) and to LA to face Loyola Marymount on Saturday (FSNNW Seattle, Q6 NBC Spokane)
For my take on last night's game, scroll one post below this one or click here if this post is the only one on the page.
The day before, he couldn't hold down his food. Last night, his plan to play limited minutes went by the wayside with 14 first-quarter points. Ray Allen would end up with 25 points in 31 minutes, which is sort of limited (he sat out the fourth quarter), but not to the point of the five or six minutes total that were originally planned.
And hooray for Reggie Evans grabbing 21 boards for a career high. He's got mitts.
Tuesday vs. New Orleans (7p, FSNNW)
Thursday vs. Sacramento (7:30p, TNT)
Friday at Phoenix (6p, FSNNW)
Everett shut out Seattle 2-0. Bryan Bridges gave up two goals on the first three Everett shots, chasing him from the net. Those two goals, both by Kyle Annesley, held up, and Mike Wall didn't let anything past him, getting his 9th shutout of the season to tie Bridges for the WHL lead. This looks like a Devils/Wild game through the boxscore. Seattle outshot Everett 18-12. Bryan Bridges stopped 1 of 3, and Gavin McHale stopped all 9 he faced for Seattle. Mike Wall stopped all 18 he saw for Everett.
Vancouver and Lethbridge skated to a 2-2 tie. Vancouver fell behind 2-0 on the road and managed to score twice and squeak out the single point. Mitch Bartley scored in the second period on the power play to get the Giants within one, and Triston Grant scored the tying goal in the third period, also on the power play. Adam Courchaine assisted on both goals. Vancouver outshot Lethbridge 31-30, and Marek Schwarz stopped 28 for Vancouver.
Manitoba beat San Antonio 5-1. San Antonio tied the game in the first period, but they would get no closer as the Moose scored four more goals to clobber the Rampage. Justin Morrison and Peter Sarno (game-winner) scored in the first period, Kevin Bieksa scored in the second period, and Bieksa and Kent Huskins rounded out the Moose scoring. Sarno also had two assists. Manitoba outshot San Antonio 28-23, and Wade Flaherty stopped 22 for the Moose.
Puget Sound beat Spokane 8-1. Spokane scored in the first period to get to 2-1, but the Tomahawks exploded and didn't look back. Chase Ambuter got a hat trick, and Travis Cottom stopped 20 of 21 shots. The Tomahawks put up 54 shots. This sets up the next weekend of play with the Portland Pioneers at home in Bremerton. The Pioneers have a one-point lead in the standings. The Tomahawks need to come away with at least three points (a win and a tie) on the weekend to take the NorPac western division title.
Tuesday: Kootenay at Portland, Vancouver at Medicine Hat
Wednesday: Spokane at Seattle, Kelowna at Everett, Vancouver at Calgary
Friday: Tri-City at Everett, Spokane at Portland, Manitoba at Saint John's, Portland at Puget Sound
Saturday: Everett at Seattle, Portland at Tri-City, Vancouver at Spokane, Manitoba at Saint John's, Portland at Puget Sound
Be safe and have yourself a great Super Bowl Sunday.