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A little denial goes a long way

A GRIP ON SPORTS

For all of you who experienced feelings of sadness last night watching Oklahoma City defeat San Antonio and move on to the NBA Finals, we have a solution for you. It's one I'm using myself and it seems to be working. Read on.


••••••••••

• Denial is a wonderful thing, no matter what your therapist might say. And it may just get you through the next couple weeks if you follow this handy-dandy formula I'm enjoying right now. I came to the conclusion this week the SuperSonics are still alive. Yep, the team may play its games in the armpit of America (no offense Oklahoma City), but it still is the SuperSonics, no matter what David Stern, Clay Bennett or Howard Schultz might want you to believe. Every time Kevin Durant hits a big shot, his jersey says Sonics across the front, not that other name. Every time Russell Westbrook throws a pass into the third row, in my eyes he's doing it as a member of the green and gold. When the team meets either the Boston Celtics or the Miami Heat in the finals, it will be returning to a place it hasn't visited since losing the Michael Jordan and the Bulls in 1996. Yep, I'm just refusing to believe. And, by adopting this attitude, my anger has just melted away. All those people wearing white shirts last night? They were rooting for the Sonics. Sure, I wasn't there, but I've never attended a Sonics game live anyway, so what's the difference? Actually, I believe the Seattle media missed the boat when the Sonics' home games were relocated to OKC four years ago. The Times should have embedded a writer in the town and covered the team daily. And one of the radio stations should have continued to broadcast the games. Kevin Calabro could have called them the Sonics, Lenny Wilkens could have mangled Thabo Sefolosha's name and Nick Collison could have continued to root from the bench. Everything would have been hunky dory. As I said, denial is a wonderful thing. And so is an NBA title.

• Besides, how could you not root for a team that Scott Brooks coaches? After all, he attended the best university in America – as did a couple of his assistants.

•••

• Washington State: Christian Caple is back today with a morning blog post detailing another defensive player leaving the school as well as a few other notes. … ESPN.com rated the coaching positions in all of the nation's college this week. Guess which school finished 12th in the Pac-12? Yep, WSU. … Arizona has danced its way to the Super Regional this weekend. … A UW football signee is also going to play baseball professionally.

• Eastern Washington: Jim Allen has two Eagle stories today (and a blog post), one a triumphant tale of daring on Long Lake, the other a sad one from the track.

• Mariners: No, we're not ignoring the M's. Not after they took two of three from the Angels and posted a winning record on a tough road trip. And we don't even have to pretend in this case. Wednesday's 8-6 win over the Angels was made possible by Ichiro (yep), Kyle Seager and a decent bullpen performance. And the defense wasn't bad either. … Michael Saunders had a heck of a road trip. … Felix is getting better. … The draft finished up with the M's targeting pitching in the later rounds. … Here are the Washington players chosen on the final day.

• Sounders: Seattle will have a short breather, but as the month wears on, so will the Sounders' schedule. And that's not likely to change. … It may still be a while before the starting goaltender returns. … We'll put Jim Allen's story about Spokane's women's soccer team, the Spokane Shine (at right), here. My theory is if you are reading the Sounders section, you are a soccer fan.

• NBA: If you can't get on board with my Sonics plan, maybe this story from the Times will make you feel better. It's about the proposed new arena. Actually, after reading it you'll probably get the same impression I did. The Seattle City Council is not all that happy with the plan.

•••

• If you've bought in to my SuperSonics idea, thanks ever so much. And, if possible, could you also delude yourself into believing reading this column each morning is important to your health and well-being? I would appreciate it. Until later …


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Jim Allen (@srjimallen) Sports reporter Jim Allen's primary coverage areas are Eastern Washington University football and men's basketball, and college and high school soccer. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Jim Meehan (@srjimm) Jim Meehan's coverage areas include Gonzaga University men's basketball, Spokane Shock football, golf and volleyball. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Chris Derrick Chris Derrick is a sports reporter. His primary coverage areas are the Spokane Chiefs, Spokane Indians, women's basketball and high school softball and volleyball. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Sean Kramer Sean Kramer is a freelance correspondent who covers the University of Idaho football team and men's basketball team.

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