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A GRIP ON SPORTS

You are walking down the street. You come across David Stern's limo, which has a flat tire. He is standing outside the car, holding a dead phone in his hand. No one else is around. Do you: A) pull out your phone and call for help; B) ignore him and walk away; or C) tell him exactly how you feel concerning his treatment of Seattle over the years? Read on.


••••••••••

• I would choose D. What's D, you ask? Simple. Tell him you need a few bucks to make the call, then pretend to call AAA. While waiting for the non-existent tow truck, stand next to him and continually tell him help is on the way. There's a shot it will show up soon, you tell him. Just have patience – and hope. Make another fake call. Ask for more money. Make another fake call. Then tell him, sorry, someone else needs your help more and walk away. … You know what. I couldn't do that. I'm not that type of guy. It's not fair to treat someone with such disrespect, even if they deserve it. Using others, using people, using communities, that's just not right no matter who it is. So I guess I would choose C. And I would hope that I could articulate all the feelings I have pent up inside. The thrust of my comments would emphasize how easy it would have been to make Washington State NBA fans feel better by just promising one thing: First shot at the next available expansion franchise. That's all. Simple. Really, no one from here to Gig Harbor really wanted to steal another city's franchise. We know how much that hurts. All the area wanted was to get its Sonics back. An expansion team would fill the bill nicely, assuming all the old records, putting up the banner, taking its spot in the hearts of the area's pro basketball fans. Simple. Chris Hansen has the money. He has the will. He has the support. Could you just have thrown us a bone? We would go away, start planning and begin watching the NBA again, not feeling so stepped on anymore. But no, you can't even do that. So, I'm sorry. I won't make a call. You're on your own. Maybe I'll pass this way in a couple hours. If I do, then maybe I'll feel differently. Maybe I'll make a call then. I hope that's enough, because it's all I've got. Now sit quietly and wait.

•••

• WSU: We found a bunch of Washington State links today, though most are from out-of-the-way sources. … We'll start with a former Cougar coach basketball coach taking a high school job. We tweeted the news Paul Graham was becoming a prep coach yesterday just because it seemed so odd. Maybe foul language isn't a big deal in Texas high school sports or maybe Graham's use of it has changed. … Bill Moos talked future football schedules on his radio show Monday and the news he was working to get games with Michigan State made news in that state – and other places. … Speaking of nonconference football schedules, the Pac-12's this fall is tougher than any other major conference. … The Cougars' wide receivers are well thought of by ESPN.com.

• Gonzaga: Funny thing about playing late nonconference baseball games with the hope of improving your RPI. You can lose and then how much did they help? Gonzaga will find out in a couple weeks, if it doesn't win the WCC's automatic berth, because it lost again to Oregon. … Jim Meehan has this blog post on the Zags losing out on another high-profile transfer.

• Idaho: Along with a new football coach, the Vandals are installing a new video board. Josh Wright has a blog post with some particulars.

• Shock: Missed Jim Meehan's Shock notebook yesterday (I either didn't see it or it wasn't online), so we'll pass it along today.

• Preps: It is Thursday, right? So we do have prep stuff to pass along, of course. Greg Lee catches up with the coaching changes in the area as well as advancing a few Idaho state tournaments and Washington track meets. … Jim Allen covers the state soccer playoffs as two local teams advance. … Mike Vlahovich advances this weekend's state baseball playoffs with a feature on Gonzaga Prep's three pitchers.

• Mariners: Why couldn't the M's have saved some of the runs for today, the rubber match of the three-game Yankee Stadium series? After all, Hisashi Iwakuma doesn't need a dozen runs to win a game. But, thanks to Raul Ibanez's two home runs – when Ibanez wears an “I Love New York” T-shirt, he really means it – and other big hits to a 12-2 victory over the Yankees. … Michael Morse is finding his stroke lower in the batting order. … The Mariners are handcuffed in their middle infield. Not literally, of course, but in the moves they can make. … You can breathe. Felix Hernandez is OK.

• Sonics: I know no one feels sympathy for multi-millionaires, but the Maloofs may end up getting hosed in the deal. No matter how much money you have, losing out on $75 million is a big deal. Just thought I would throw that out there to get your mind off how screwed Hansen and Seattle have been. … Seattle will keep trying to get an NBA team, though few were surprised when Stern rigged the vote against the city and in favor of Sacramento. (Someone pieced together one of the owners' ripped-up notes yesterday and it showed the NBA knew it was turning down the best deal.)

• Sounders: Seattle is playing better and just in time for the U.S. Open Cup.

•••

• That's it for today. We'll be back someday. I promise – and no, that's not a David Stern promise. It's better. Until then …


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Jim Allen 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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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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Josh Wright Josh Wright is a freelance correspondent who covers the University of Idaho football team and men's basketball team.

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Vince Grippi is the online producer for SportsLink, a product of The Spokesman-Review.

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