Who is that assistant linebacker’s coach the Seahawks just hired? Why is he so important? And why is everyone so excited to have him aboard?
These are questions you may find yourself asking in the wake of the recent news about the hiring of one Lofa Tatupu, new assistant linebacker’s coach for your Seattle Seahawks. And your questions are certainly valid. How often do we really get excited about an assistant’s assistant, anyway? And why this assistant’s assistant, for that matter?
You’re very lost and confused. You’ve been a 12 since 2012, but this name rings no bells. Tatupu? Can’t remember hearing that one tossed around the water cooler at work. Fear not, good 12. Despite your relative lack of devotion to a sports franchise which you’ve blindly pledged your faith, we’re here to help. Let’s begin, shall we?
The legend of Lofa Tatupu begins precisely one decade ago, in a simpler time, before the advent of Twitter, or iPhones, or even Super Bowl XLVIII neck tattoos. It is a legend that spans just six years, and yet one that radiates as bright as the dazzling incandescence of a colossal supernova. Tatupu, you see, was a vibrant, lustrous star. But we’ll table his legend for now. Because in order to be properly introduced to greatness, one must first understand what greatness is not.
Continue reading Introducing 12s to Lofa Tatupu
I’ll never forget the first time I ever witnessed one of my favorite sports teams endure a bitter, unexpected defeat. The date was May 7th, 1994. It was a Saturday and I was at a friend’s house. He was the catcher on our Little League team, the Orioles, and I was one of two pitchers on the squad. We’d played a game that morning, and immediately after we went back to his place to watch basketball.
Our beloved Sonics played the Denver Nuggets that afternoon, game five of the NBA’s Western Conference First Round Playoffs. The series was tied at two games apiece. Seattle had taken an early 2-0 series lead with the home court advantage. Games three and four, however, went to the Nuggets in the altitude of the Mile High City. A return to the Pacific Northwest signaled the final bout of the five-game matchup. As the number-one overall seed, the Sonics should have easily dispatched the lowly Nuggets, winners of just 42 contests in the regular season. And yet on this particular day, it wasn’t meant to be.
Continue reading The Fleeting Disappointment of Defeat
I love Marshawn Lynch. He is the curator of some of our greatest memories as sports fans and without a doubt one of the greatest athletes this city has ever seen. At this point in his decorated career, Lynch needs no colorful introduction. He is simply one of the most accomplished figures in Seattle sports history.
By contrast, I hate this incessant Marshawn Lynch versus “the media” saga that will not die. Of late, this story has spiraled to the point of fans crafting a petition to keep the NFL and the media from “bullying” Lynch by interviewing him after games. This is so incredibly stupid.
Continue reading An Open Vent: The Marshawn Lynch Saga That Will Not Die
With all due respect to the San Francisco 49ers, there may be no team easier to hate than the Carolina Panthers.
Don’t believe me? I can give you three reasons why the Seahawks’ upcoming playoff opponent is worth a hefty dose of your spiteful venom. And it all starts with the quarterback…
1. Cam Newton’s fake perma-smile
Cam Newton is to football what Alex Rodriguez is to baseball. Like A-Rod, Newton is a talented superstar. Like A-Rod, Newton has ventured into his share of controversy in the past. Like A-Rod, Newton feigns obliviousness to the public’s perception of him. And like A-Rod, Newton seems to be among the most genuinely disingenuous personas in all of sports.
Continue reading Three Reasons You Should Start Despising the Carolina Panthers TODAY
January 8th, 2011 …
… versus December 21st, 2014
In fairness to the mantra uttered by members of San Francisco’s steadily eroding fan base, the 49ers did indeed achieve a Quest for Six on Sunday afternoon.
With just over thirteen minutes remaining in the first half, the frail fragments of former running back Frank Gore plunged into the end zone for a sextet of points and a whopping eighty-six-percent of San Francisco’s scoring output on the day. Seconds later, a keen ear could almost make out the resonating sound of Gore’s Life Alert Emergency Response monitor, the result of the old man unexpectedly succumbing to the effects of gravity.
The Niners’ lone touchdown was supplemented only by Phil Dawson’s extra point, tacked on immediately after Gore’s jaunt to paydirt. And just like that, it was over.
If there is such a thing as moral victories, however, the visiting squad could chalk up their second quarter red zone success as exactly that. In two of the three previous games, the Seahawks had neglected to allow their foes anything more than a field goal. That San Francisco achieved a six-point score should be applauded. Quest for Six complete.
Continue reading Death of a Rivalry
Sunday was not a great day for Seattle sports fans. Both the Seahawks and Mariners fell to their respective opponents, doing so in a span of ten minutes around 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time. For those paying witness to either contest, the results were soul-crushing.
The Seahawks, of course, never lose. They hadn’t fallen short of victory since a late-season slip-up at the hands of the Arizona Cardinals some eight months and twenty-five days ago, a loss remembered as a mere speed bump along the Super Bowl autobahn. That the Hawks had neglected to triumph just three times during the 2013 campaign certainly didn’t help, either. A fan base perennially exposed to defeat for decades prior had come to anticipate winning based on the dominating successes of a few quality years. Withering under the 90-plus-degree heat of San Diego’s late-summer sun was certainly unacceptable. Until it became a reality. And then it was nothing short of mind-blowing.
Before the shock of a Seahawks loss could truly set in, let alone wear off, the Mariners went down swinging, literally, as Michael Saunders struck out in the ninth inning, capping off a 4-0 undressing by the visiting Oakland A’s. The outcome marked consecutive defeats for the M’s, sending true-to-the-blue fanatics into full-blown panic mode. In the throes of the franchise’s first legitimate playoff run in more than a decade, one loss was heartbreaking, but two in a row? And just minutes after the football team lost, too? Sharp objects required hiding.
Continue reading A Lose-Loose Situation: Profiling One Bad Sunday