Super Conflicted

The uncomfortable boosterism in media.
The uncomfortable boosterism in media.

The uncomfortable boosterism in media.

Two summers ago, I was on my feet at Safeco Field only because it was the only way to see. As Felix Hernandez was putting the finishing touches on a perfect game on Aug. 15, 2012, the woman next to me began to weep. Her boyfriend turned to me and said, in a concerned tone, “It’s OK to look happy about this.”

But I struggled with that sentiment, as I did last night, after returning home from watching the Super Bowl with my parents. “Congratulations!” said a friend, who watched the game with my wife. I felt odd about not brightening up, but not as odd as I would have felt fist-bumping my friend over my hometown Seahawks’ 43-8 victory over the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XVLIII.
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Citation Journalism and the Blurring Lines in Reporting

A report that was disappointing in more ways than one.
A report that was disappointing in more ways than one.

A report that was disappointing in more ways than one.

Last Saturday, I saw a front-page tease on The Seattle Times that stirred my heart: The newspaper was reporting that one of my childhood idols, Spencer Haywood, had been elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame.

But by the time I went to read the story on the newspaper’s website later that day, things had changed.

“Spencer Haywood not selected for basketball Hall of Fame,” was the only headline I could find.

Huh?
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Seattle Should Fret About the Lakers

Mike D'Antoni Phil Jackson
Mike D'Antoni Phil Jackson

The Lakers went with Mike D’Antoni over a third tour with Phil Jackson.

This column originally appeared at SeattleWeekly.com

As blasphemous as this may sound in these formerly NBA parts, I must admit that I’m worried about the Los Angeles Lakers. I know, I know. Beat El-Lay, and all that. But, conceivably the NBA will be back in Seattle, and we all want to be part of a thriving venture, the better the odds that we have the SuperSonics for at least another 40 uninterrupted years. And for that to happen, it’s essential to wish at least a little positive karma upon the City of Angels.

No matter how much it fancies itself a globally relevant enterprise, the NBA long has been a league that has thrived when its bicoastal American anchors also have. On the Left Coast, L.A. by far is the most meaningful pushpin on the basketball map.

I started covering the NBA when it was pulling itself out of the ashes, previously branded a “drug league” or “too black,” and badly trailing the NFL and Major League Baseball in sports relevancy. It may have re-branded itself as more accessible and fan-friendly, but the NBA’s reanimation came mainly on coattails of Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, two polar opposites in style, personality and geography. So the Lakers are my frame of NBA bling reference — Magic to Worthy, Riley in Armani, the Sky Hook, Coop-a-Loops, the Laker Girls, Showtime.
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