A GRIP ON SPORTS
Want to get a headache? Try putting yourself in the mind of Seahawk running back Marshawn Lynch. And figure out what his end-game is during his holdout from the Hawks' training camp. Read on.
• If it's a new contract, I pretty sure Lynch will be disappointed. I read all the things general manager John Schneider said yesterday and it is seems, in a calm sort of way, the Hawks feel they rewarded Lynch for his talents before every one else on their roster. As master plans go, giving the most money to the guy you were going to build around was a smart choice. Now, a couple years later, other players have earned their spot at the big-boy table and the Hawks have responded appropriately. And have stayed true to their long-term plan. That would be disrupted, Schneider said, by giving Lynch more money. So, if a new contract is Lynch's goal, I'm not sure he will reach it. But if more guaranteed money is all that's necessary – none of the around $30 million Lynch has remaining on his contract is guaranteed and there are a lot of performance-based incentives included in that number – that might be a possibility. But say it isn't. And say, if it were, that wouldn't satisfy Lynch, what's next? Maybe it's what happened to him in Buffalo when he wanted more. Maybe a trade is a possibility, though a younger Marshawn Lynch was worth a lot more to the Hawks than this version would be to anyone else in the NFL. But a draft choice or two might be available. Nothing high, of course, but maybe a spot that could turn into a starter two or three years down the road. Is that what anyone in Seattle wants? Nope. And I can say that with near-absolute certainty. A happy, healthy Marshawn Lynch behind Russell Wilson is a key element of the Seahawk offense. A grouchy, pouting Lynch most certainly won't be. But it's what the Hawks have right now. And getting that figured out might be the most important item on their agenda this preseason camp.
• WSU: The Cougars are about to travel to their preseason camp, all the way down U.S. 195/95 to Lewiston, Idaho. Jacob Thorpe has the news released by the school yesterday on another trek to the land of the paper mill in this blog post. Jacob also had another fun post on Mike Leach's offseason attire (note, the photos are pretty graphic) and another on last year's Stanford game. ... It's Saturday, so we pass along the mailbag from ESPN.com's Pac-12 blog.
• Indians: Want a mirror image of the Indians' start to the season? We present the start of the second half of the Northwest League's slate. Everything is backward and Spokane is 0-4.
• Golf: Didn't want to miss Jim's weekly column this week, even though it ran in Friday's paper.
• Seahawks: Not every question at training camp related to Lynch's holdout, even if it might have seemed that way. There were also a whole bunch concerning defending the Super Bowl title, a few about injuries and, of course, whether or not Christine Michael is the guy if Lynch doesn't come back. ... Percy Harvin is the old man of the receiving corps, but he feels like a young kid. ... The NFL's rule changes seem to be aimed at the Hawks' defense.
• Mariners: Have we mentioned Felix Hernandez is really, really good? He put together another outing of at least seven innings and gave up two or fewer runs once again last night. That's the 13th consecutive time he's done it, an American League record. And, yes, we have to mention it, the M's lost 2-1 in 10 innings. ... Seems the addition of Kendrys Morales, the big news from Thursday, wasn't the panacea the lineup needed. He did, however, drive in the only M's run.
• Sounders: It seems Clint Dempsey is getting hooked on the Northwest. We understand that. He and DeAndre Yedlin will serve as grand marshalls of the Torchlight Parade tonight, another sign Dempsey is putting down roots.
• The weekend is upon us. Make it a good one. There are not that many non-football weekends left. Until later ...