Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883


Watching and writing


My attention is split right now. No, I haven't developed a second persona. I am trying to watch the gold medal basketball game while I write. Thus part of me is a writer, part of me a fan. As a writer I have some serious questions about the Olympics I want answered. As a fan I just wonder two things: Who is that homeless guy Spain has playing guard and why can't Kobe guard him. Read on.


• I hoped to have this post done by halftime but that wasn't going to happen. I'll come back later and pass along the final score. ... UPDATE: Despite a battle (and some questionable officiating), the United States did win the gold medal in men's basketball with a harder-than-it should-have-been 107-100 victory. ... The other athletic event I'm interested in today is the PGA Championship, mainly because Tiger Woods pulled a reverse Tiger Woods yesterday (and this morning) and more than likely pulled defeat from the jaws of victory again on a weekend. Whether he can bounce back in the final round interests me. I'll spend the day watching that.

• But my Sunday sports viewing probably doesn't interest anyone but me, Kim and the cat (a warm lap to sit in). I wonder if last night's viewing might have interested you. Not mine, but America's. Because NBC's choice of what to show last night flummoxed me a bit and I wonder if it did the same to you. When Kim and I got out of "The Bourne Legacy" yesterday at about 1 (it was our anniversary but we were still going to save money by going to the matinee), the women's gold medal basketball game was on. We got home in time to watch the U.S. finish its rout of France and win its fifth consecutive championship. Then last night I noticed NBC was going to show the women's volleyball gold medal game tape delayed in prime time. So let me get this right: Basketball, quite possibly the major women's sport in America, is shown during the day; volleyball, a fun game to watch but an afterthought in our sports consciousness, is saved for prime time. OK, I admit I should be happy about this because I have been whining about too many events not shown live, but I really don't understand the thinking here. If NBC's argument has been – and it has – that it needs to save the big events for prime time if it wants to maximize its profits, then why show volleyball and not basketball. Someone at NBC must have decided volleyball would be of more interest to more people than hoop. Really? Have they ever looked at college attendance figures? Or TV ratings? I'm sure they did and still made the decision the programmers made. Odd. Oh well, we're No. 1.


• Washington State: The Cougars scrimmaged yesterday and guess what? The quarterbacks excelled. Christian Caple covered Jeff Tuel and Connor Halliday's big days with a blog post, his story and this morning's blog post. ... WSU announced this year's Hall of Fame class this week. ... Finally, I'm putting John Blanchette's column about a local woman fighting ALS in this spot because of the connection between the disease and Cougar great Steve Gleason.

• Idaho: The Vandals scrimmaged in the Kibbie Dome and Josh Wright was there. His assessment: the battle for starting quarterback may be about over. Here is his story and blog post.

• Indians: The Indians are back in Spokane but that doesn't mean they earned a win. Everett, and M's first-round draft pick Mike Zunino, defeated Spokane 6-5. Jess Brown has the story.

• Mariners: Once again the M's built a big lead (in part to another John Jaso home run). But this time their starting pitcher held it. Yep, for maybe the only time in history, I can write Hisashi Iwakuma did something Felix Hernandez couldn't the night before. The result, the Mariners defeated the Angels 7-4. ... Eric Wedge is trying to find playing time for all three of his catchers while also finding a spot for outfielder Trayvon Robinson. ... It's Sunday so Larry Stone has his usual items, a column, notebook, awards, rankings and more.

• Seahawks: As a sports writer, I always enjoyed a good quarterback battle. It was fodder for about a thousand stories. But as a fan, I've never thought it was a good thing when the team I'm rooting for is undecided about who its quarterback should be. The Hawks may need to figure out who is the starter pretty quick despite the 27-17 win over Tennessee.

• Sounders: San Jose not only leads the West, it also is the MLS best team down the stretch in close games. The Earthquakes showed why last night when they scored late and defeated the Sounders 2-1.


• Thanks a lot for the nice notes yesterday, though some of the Twitter congratulations came well after my bedtime. Hey, I'm old. Until next time ...

Vince Grippi
Vince Grippi is a freelance local sports blogger for He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

Follow Vince online:

Looking for a Grip on Sports?

Vince Grippi's daily take on all things regional sports has been moved to our main sports section online. You can find a collection of these columns here.