Questionable officiating marred Mike Holmgren’s Seahawks workforce’s Tremendous Bowl journey. (Getty)
We stumbled upon the Mount Rushmore of Seattle sports activities as a subject for a couple of minutes Wednesday on Tom, Jake and Stacy. In a while, I started fascinated with among the worst gamers within the historical past of this city, however I didn’t need to be imply in singling out people as a result of I’m a pleasant man. As an alternative, I attempted to consider the 4 worst occurrences in our previous.
Surprisingly, there weren’t as many as you’ll suppose. Those who missed the reduce have been issues like UW soccer’s 0-12 season and the 2001 Mariners falling wanting attending to the World Sequence. It’s robust to say that the 2001 Mariners are one of many worst issues to ever occur although given the enjoyment that they gave this city for six months earlier than the Yankees beat them within the ALCS (for the second straight yr – AAAAGGH!).
What I checklist beneath, there’s no debate – it’s unhealthy. Behold Mount Trashmore!
George Washington: The Sonics are stolen from Seattle
The horrible sting of 1 sport, season, or second might linger perpetually in our reminiscences. Whether or not you come inside an inch of successful otherwise you’re out of the race earlier than a season is midway over, at the least you get to look at your workforce play. There’s at all times subsequent season. Nothing will ever damage as terribly as a workforce being taken away from a metropolis.
Let’s needless to say that this wasn’t simply any workforce. The Seattle SuperSonics had a proud historical past. It is a workforce that frequently made the playoffs and have been anticipated to compete most of the time. There are some vagabond organizations which have little flares of success however on the entire are depressing sufficient to justify transferring. That’s not the case right here. With three Finals appearances and one title to the Sonics’ credit score, followers of the inexperienced, white and gold had about two dozen gamers (if no more) that they may level to as all-time greats each for the franchise and the game. Names like Sikma, Wilkens, Schrempf, Kemp, McMillan and Payton will at all times reside within the lore of our city, to not point out Durant who may have fulfilled his future maybe as the best of all of them.
There’s loads of blame to go round, as effectively. Metropolis politicians, Clay Bennett, David Stern and Howard Schultz are all accountable in their very own means for permitting the Sonics to be moved to Oklahoma Metropolis. We don’t must rehash the entire saga now, but it surely goes with out saying that the disappointment and resentment that also permeate the Seattle sports activities scene even as we speak are a direct results of underhandedness, greed and straight-up dishonesty. This wasn’t a state of affairs the place the followers had given up on the workforce and weren’t drawing crowds. These aforementioned both stole or allowed the workforce to be stolen. Have you ever ever been burglarized? It’s a reasonably violating feeling.
Worse but, we don’t know if the NBA has severe curiosity in bringing a workforce again to city in the event that they resolve to increase. What a large number.
Thomas Jefferson: Seahawks’ Tremendous Bowl XL loss marred by officiating
This might nonetheless have been a really shut sport, even with out one unhealthy name after one other by the officiating crew. The sixth-seeded Steelers have been crimson scorching, however the Seahawks have been maybe the perfect and most constant workforce within the NFL in that 2005 season. Certain, Seattle has gained a title within the intervening years, however in an odd means, the passage of time has solely made the occurrences of this sport much more unbelievable.
Typically a referee will make a mistake on the worst doable time, and all of us must reside with it. Saints followers are nonetheless making an attempt to sue the NFL over a missed name within the 2018 NFC Championship that value them the sport – and who can blame them. It’s 10 instances worse although when it’s not only one name. It’s at the least 5 that point and time once more modified the momentum of the sport, swinging it in Pittsburgh’s favor. And this was not the NFC Championship. This was the ultimate sport.
There’s no assure for Saints followers that their workforce would have gained the Tremendous Bowl. With out all of those errors made by Invoice Leavy and his crew that night time, I’ll say that there’s about an 80% likelihood that Seattle takes dwelling the Lombardi trophy. Regardless of what number of Tremendous Bowls the Seahawks win from now till the top of time, being reminded of that night will at all times be prone to make followers ailing. The Patriots have gained six Tremendous Bowls since 2001 and should you speak to them about 2007’s 18-1 workforce, it’s nonetheless a wound that’s positively open (nonetheless ridiculous that sounds).
And lets not neglect the characters concerned. Mike Holmgren would doubtless be within the Corridor of Fame already if not for that loss. Beloved gamers like Matt Hasselbeck, Steve Hutchinson, Walter Jones and Bobby Engram would all have Tremendous Bowl rings. For them, watching the present period of Seahawks success needs to be bittersweet at greatest.
Abraham Lincoln: The choose – Tremendous Bowl XLIX
If solely we may reverse the order of the way in which 2013 and 2014 performed out – you at all times need to finish on a excessive word.
Tremendous Bowl XLVIII introduced us a lot pleasure. The parade, the win over the 49ers to get to the massive sport, the bloodbath of the high-flying Denver Broncos. That was the workforce of all groups. There was nothing the Seahawks may have carried out any higher – besides do it once more. They usually have been only one play away.
Followers of groups just like the Browns, Lions, Bengals and others which have by no means gained a title would possibly say “Hey, don’t get grasping. At the least you bought one.” Certain, that is smart, however c’mon, it’s nonetheless painful. It will have been one factor if New England had crushed Seattle, say, 30-17 in a comparatively shut sport. There might have been a number of performs that would have altered that sort of consequence, however the place precisely they have been and the way crucial every of mentioned performs have been can be up for debate. In our case, it was one play.
We had the perfect working again within the league able to take the handoff and bust one yard by means of a New England protection that may have had a troublesome time stopping him. As an alternative, we throw the ball, Malcolm Butler picks it off and the sport is basically over. Identical to that, the Pete Carroll-era Seahawks go from probably being the workforce of the last decade and one of many all-time most dominant groups to only one other champion. They’re the Packers of the late 90s. What occurred with them, you ask? That’s my level. No person cares or remembers.
That is the kind of play that can hang-out followers perpetually as a result of we’ve all been in conditions the place if not for simply that one resolution, our lives might need been totally different. And to cap it off, the choice itself was so mind-boggling. It defied every thing the Seahawks have been about.
There’s a saying pitchers have about ensuring to get crushed together with your greatest pitch. At the least you realize you left all of it on the market. The Seahawks received beat throwing their changeup on this case. From the possession proper on all the way down to followers who haven’t even been born but, this can hang-out us perpetually.
Theodore Roosevelt: The Invoice Bavasi period of the Mariners
We needed to get the Mariners in right here one way or the other. In fascinated with Seattle’s usually tortured baseball workforce, it’s attention-grabbing to notice that whereas they’ve had lengthy stretches of distress, there haven’t truly been that many stretches. From 1977 to 1994, they completed little or no, however that’s only one period. From 2004 to the current, it’s been mainly the identical. Certain, we’ve had different regimes since Bavasi, however each have spent all of their time making an attempt to scrub up the mess left by their predecessors.
Bavasi got here on the scene after the conclusion of the 2003 season which noticed the Mariners go 93-69 for the second straight yr. The one motive why these groups didn’t make the playoffs was due to sudden surges by the Angels and Crimson Sox, who gained 99 and 95 video games in 2002 and 2003, respectively. So in comes Bavasi to attempt to usher in a brand new period of Mariners baseball because the earlier regime’s gamers started to age. Félix Hernández was on the horizon and Ichiro was already right here, however Bavasi doesn’t get credit score for both of them.
Throughout Bavasi’s tenure, the membership turned in a plus-.500 season as soon as (88 wins in 2007) and made every kind of perplexing trades that yielded near no success, setting again the workforce for years to come back. Erik Bedard was acquired from Baltimore for outfielder Adam Jones, starter Chris Tillman and reliever George Sherrill, all of whom made at the least one All-Star workforce for the Orioles. Shin-Soo Choo was dealt to Cleveland for first baseman Ben Broussard, who was already washed up. Then there have been debatably unhealthy luck signings like Adrian Beltre and Richie Sexson, neither of whom had the productiveness to match the sum of money they have been being paid on the time. Do I have to go on? Jarrod Washburn, Jared Weaver and Brad Wilkerson have been all paid to do jobs that they couldn’t reside as much as, and on and on.
By the point Jack Zduriencik rolled in right here with a status for scouting good expertise in his days with the Brewers, he had his work reduce out for him. Issues didn’t go a lot better, however at the least he acquired some pitching expertise right here and there like Hisashi Iwakuma and varied bullpen names that really helped them make a run on the playoffs in 2014 after which 2016, when the workforce featured a mixture of Zduriencik and Jerry Dipoto gamers.
The larger image is that present GM Dipoto remains to be placing out the fireplace began by Bavasi and stored aflame by Zduriencik. We’ll see if his title will get added to this checklist or if he can determine a approach to land on a model of a Seattle Mount Rushmore – the nice type.
Extra from Tom: Why I’m grading the Seahawks’ 2020 draft an A-minus