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NHL to Seattle...now how about the NBA?

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NHL to Seattle...now how about the NBA?

Seattle finally has its long-awaited NHL team. The league unanimously approved adding Seattle as the NHL’s 32nd franchise on Tuesday.

While hockey fans in Seattle have a lot to celebrate right now, many may start to wonder if this will be a gateway for an NBA franchise to return to the Emerald City? 

NBC Sports NBA Insider Tom Haberstroh shared his thoughts on the possibility of an NBA team joining Seattle in the future:

“With betting-related revenue and a fresh TV deal lining the pockets of NBA owners, business is booming in the league. It seems like a ripe time for NBA expansion, right? Unfortunately, there has been no talk about expansion.

Even if the league decides to add a team to its field of 30, Las Vegas may have jumped Seattle in line. It's a much friendlier climate for gambling these days and the league already has built roots with Summer League there. While the NHL news makes me more bullish on the NBA following suit, I don't see a good chance that Seattle gets its team back in the next five years. But in the next 10? I feel better about those prospects.”

Haberstroh says it’s not off the table for Seattle to get a team in the form of a relocation by another team. He noted Memphis could be the next NBA team to be sold.

“Keep an eye on the Memphis Grizzlies who could move back to the Pacific Northwest if owner Robert Pera decides to cash in and sell the team. But don't expect that to happen anytime soon; Pera told season ticket-holders in the past year that he's committed to the city of Memphis.”

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in May that the league has no significant plans to expand right now, noting he wanted to keep his focus on “creating a competitive 30-team league.”

While an NBA team won’t likely call Seattle “home” anytime soon, one can only dream of the sweet possibilty.

Hockey in Seattle is alive once again

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Hockey in Seattle is alive once again

Dreams do come true. Seattle will officially get an NHL team. 

The National Hockey League’s Board of Governors announced Tuesday that Seattle has been awarded an expansion franchise that will begin playing at remodeled KeyArena in October 2021.

“Today is a historic moment in Seattle sports history,” Tod Leiweke, CEO of NHL Seattle said in a press release.“ Our fans are at the core of this movement to bring an NHL team to Seattle and today we celebrate in honor of them.”

Fans have long expressed a desire to bring an NHL team to the Emerald City. In March, Seattle ownership launched a season ticket drive that surpassed the NHL’s season ticket goal of 10,000 in just 12 minutes, and so far, the NHL to Seattle movement has 32,000 depositors for season tickets.

It’s been nearly 100 years since the collapse of the Seattle Metropolitans, the first US-based team to win a Stanley Cup in 1917. The Seattle Totems, the city’s professional ice hockey team from 1944-1975, won three championships in the Central Hockey League, but fell apart after acquiring a substantial amount of debt.

While it’s uncertain if the Metropolitans or Totems will ever resurface, the Seattle Cougars, Eagles, Rainiers and Sockeyes, amongst others, are all in play for the 32nd NHL team’s name.

The NHL’s expansion could also unearth a push for a Seattle SuperSonics revival. The former Seattle NBA team was shipped off to Oklahoma City in 2008 by owner Clay Bennett. WNBA Champions, the Seattle Storm, currently occupy KeyArena, where Seattle's new NHL team will play.

Can you imagine what it would look like to have another professional basketball team back in the Pacific Northwest? Welcome back, Seattle vs. Portland Trail Blazers rivalry.

Portland Diamond Project picks Terminal 2 site for future MLB Ballpark

Portland Diamond Project picks Terminal 2 site for future MLB Ballpark

The Portland Diamond Project Thursday made it official, its preferred site for a proposed baseball stadium in Portland is the Port of Portland’s Terminal 2.

The terminal is located on the Willamette River, north of the Pearl District. The media release from PDP:

PORTLAND DIAMOND PROJECT ANNOUNCES AGREEMENT IN PRINCIPLE WITH PORT OF PORTLAND TO DEVELOP TERMINAL 2 PROPERTY Portland, OR – November 29, 2018 – Portland Diamond Project (PDP), the organization behind the effort to bring Major League Baseball to Portland, today announced it has signed an agreement in principle with the Port of Portland to develop the Port’s 45-acre Terminal 2 property, according to PDP Founder and President Craig Cheek. “We believe this has the potential to be a transformative landmark project for this city,” Cheek said. “Building an iconic, state-of-the-art ballpark along the Willamette River will catalyze economic development and capture great views of both the urban scale of the city and regional character of the Pacific Northwest.” This letter of intent with the Port kicks off a collaborative process with the City of Portland, and local communities, to create a Major League Baseball ballpark and community destination.

“We're committed to building a sustainable, equitable, and accessible ballpark that reflects what makes Portland such a special place to live,” Cheek said. “That means outstanding locally sourced food and beverage amenities, environmentally sustainable construction and operations, opportunities for makers and small businesses, and an atmosphere that celebrates diversity and inclusion and is welcoming to all Portlanders.”  

Terminal 2, which for decades handled commodities such as steel rail, bulk ores, and other oversized international cargo, offers approximately 45 acres of riverfront property with more than 2,000 linear feet of waterfront. The site is located on N.W. Front Ave., just north of the Pearl District and rapidly evolving Slabtown.  

“For the past year, we’ve been highly focused on securing the best possible property for development of a ballpark and have deeply analyzed multiple sites,” Cheek said. “Although additional options continue to present themselves, we are excited to announce that Terminal 2 is our preferred location and want to thank the Port of Portland for being such a great partner in this vision.”

For more information visit http://portlanddiamondproject.com .

The latest updates in a Twitter Q & A with PDX Diamond Project

The latest updates in a Twitter Q & A with PDX Diamond Project

The Portland Diamond Project is hard at work looking for a potential stadium site to bring Major League Baseball to Portland.

While baseball fans in Portland are anxiously awaiting the project’s latest announcement, seven-time MLB All Star and project advisor Dale Murphy took to Twitter to answer your hard-hitting questions.

On goal for timing of a MLB team:

On how Portland would develop a FARM system:

On potential stadium sites:

 

Head on over to @PDXDiamondProj on Twitter to stay tuned to all the latest updates.

New "owner" Darwin Barney on MLB to PDX: "I would bet on it"

New "owner" Darwin Barney on MLB to PDX: "I would bet on it"

The Portland Diamond Project has added another notable investor to its group -- former major-league and Oregon State infielder Darwin Barney.

“The timing is real good for me,” Barney, who just spent his first summer in retirement after an eight-year major-league career with the Cubs, Dodgers and Blue Jays.  He was in spring training this year with the Texas Rangers but decided to walk away from the game. “I never envisioned being an owner of a major-league team but I never envisioned being a major-league player, either.

“You never know what your path is going to be, you just know what your passions are going to be. I quit playing to spend more time with my family. This came up just at the right time.”

Barney is very confident that the PDP is going to be successful in its effort to bring MLB to Portland.

“I don’t want to put a number on it,” he said. “We think the chances are really good. I would bet on it. We could be a part of history here.”

Barney starred on two national championship teams at Oregon State after a high school career at Southridge. He won a Gold Glove with the Cubs after tying the major-league record for consecutive errorless games by a second baseman.

He joins Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and his wife Ciara as owners of the prospective team.

“We’ve really tried to bring a diverse group together,” Barney said. “With Russell and his wife we bring a lot of different platforms to spread the word."

“I’ve really been impressed with the leadership of this group,” he said. “They have the right people at the top. They get things done.”


 

The Storm bring home the WNBA Championship

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The Storm bring home the WNBA Championship

A 16-year veteran. A 2018 WNBA MVP. And passionate city ready for another championship. The Seattle Storm, lead by all-star veteran Sue Bird and 2018 WNBA MVP Breanna Stewart, sweep the Washington Mystics in three games to take home the team's third WNBA championship. 

What started as a blowout Seattle victory in game one, turned into a different story in game two. The Mystics made adjustments and nearly pulled out a tough road win. But Seattle flew east for game three already up two wins with just one more to go. The rest is history and the parade is on for Sunday.

Many NBA players took the moment to congratulate the Storm on their championship:

Let's quickly look at the career of young 24-year-old Breanna Stewart. Since winning her first college national championship with dominant UCONN basketball, Stewart has known knothing but winning and winning big. She went on to claim four national titles at UCONN before being drafted No. 1 to Seattle in the 2016 WNBA draft. Two years later, she can now add 2018 WNBA champion as well as 2018 WNBA MVP and 2018 WNBA Finals MVP to her already very impressive resume.

What a career, so far, for one of the most creative passers, deadly shooters, and influential basketball players in Sue Bird. She is the oldest player in the WNBA, the all-time WNBA career assist leader, a 16-year veteran in the league, and now a three-time WNBA champion. Bird scored 14 points in the fourth quarter in just five minutes to round out a win in game one. A miraculous three-point shot with the shot clock winding down in game two to swing the momentum back in the Storm's favor. And one heck of a shoe game partnered with Boston Celtics guard Kyrie Irving. And she's not done yet.

What a tremendous season and congrats to the Seattle Storm on another WNBA Championship!

 

 

 

 

Seattle Storm start WNBA Finals defending home turf

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Seattle Storm start WNBA Finals defending home turf

BY SEBASTIAN PYCIOR

Last week, I’d posted the Storm would go on to sweep… and that didn’t exactly happen, but in a way, thank goodness. We’d never get the chance to be graced by Sue Bird’s utter distaste for womankind in game 5.

No Bird’s not mean, but her jumper was absolutely filthy. Mask adorned, Bird made everything. From flopping and complaining to the refs (probably to buy some time for her team to break) to proceeding to nail timely threes, confirming the veteran’s dominance of the moment. We all like to admit that basketball is “all about the team game” but, Bird reminded us that teamwork is lamesometimes.

The Phoenix Mercury played solid defense, with Brian January chasing Bird down and contesting most of her shots. The Seattle Storm offense got a little stagnant at times in the second half, devolving to stressed out over-dribbling by Bird looking for half of a good screen from a tired Breanna Stewart. Besides Bird’s makes, it was definitely messy.

The Storm obviously won’t be able to replicate a quarter like that in the future, and I’m sure the Storm coaching staff will be back with a brand new attack against the Washington Mystics, opponents heading into tonight’s first game of the WNBA Finals.

The biggest thing to watch on both sides of the ball will be the stars. League MVP Breanna Stewart is playing great so far, and Elena Delle Donne of the Mystics looks to keep the Mystic offensive machine rolling. Here’s how each has been faring in the playoffs thus far:

  Totals Percentages Per Game
  G 3P 3PA FT FTA TRB AST STL BLK TOV FG% 3P% FT% PPG RPG APG
Breanna Stewart 5 9 25 21 24 37 9 5 7 10 0.446 0.36 0.875 24 7.4 1.8
Elena Delle Donne 5 8 21 23 23 60 18 4 4 9 0.458 0.381 1 21.4 12 3.6

*per basketball-reference.com

Elena has been snaring boards and it’ll take all of Stewart’s and Natasha Howard’s will to keeping her out of the paint. The Storm had trouble keeping Brittney Griner out of the box, so it’ll be something to keep an eye on.

In my opinion, the worst is over for the Storm. The Mercury are led by one of the greatest basketball players of all time in Diana Taurasi, and the force aka Brittney Griner. The Mystics are good, but shouldn’t halt the Storm’s grind.

In their last series, the Washington Mystics finished with a scoring differential of 2.8 against an arguably weaker team in the Atlanta Dream. The Storm, facing the Mercury, maintained a scoring differential of -.08.

I’m still holding out for a good ol’ Storm blowout, and I think they hang at least 90 on the Mystics and win by at least 15.

Sue Bird lit up Phoenix, then she lit up Twitter

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Sue Bird lit up Phoenix, then she lit up Twitter

It was an impressive 4th quarter performance from Seattle Storm guard Sue Bird on Tuesday night as she helped her team advance to the WNBA Finals. Bird scored 14 of her 22 points in the final quarter and Seattle rallied back to beat the Phoenix Mercury, 94-84.

Bird suffered a broken nose in Game 4 and she struggled with her shot for the first three quarters of Game 5 of the Conference Finals on Tuesday. But in the fourth, she took over and then she took over twitter.  

After the game, Bird told the media, “I don’t know that I’ve had a fourth quarter like this in a big game in my life, to be honest.”

This will be the Storm’s third appearance in the Finals.

WNBA MVP and forward Breanna Stewart led Seattle with 28 points and carried the scoring load through the first three quarters for Seattle before Bird took over down the stretch.

Several NBA stars took to twitter to give props to Bird on her incredible performance.




The Washington Mystics now await the Storm in the 2018 WNBA Finals. Seattle and Washington will tip-off Game One on Friday.

Washington is playing in its first WNBA Finals in franchise history. The Mystics survived a late push from the Atlanta Dream in Game 5 on Tuesday night to beat the Dream 86-81. Mystics star Elena Delle Donne returned from injury for the final two games of the WNBA semifinals series against Atlanta.

The Storm went 2-1 against the Mystics during the regular season. Seattle won a pair of close games at home, but then lost in Washington 100-77 late in the season.

Storm take a 2-0 series lead in WNBA semifinals

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Seattle Storm

Storm take a 2-0 series lead in WNBA semifinals

It took overtime, but Sue Bird and the Seattle Storm took down the Phoenix Mercury on Tuesday, 91-87, to take a commanding 2-0 series lead in the WNBA Semifinals.

Seattle led by as many as 17-points before the Mercury clawed back. Diana Taurisi hit a fade-away three from the corner with 3.6 seconds remaining in regulation to tie the game at 79, but Seattle would regain composure in overtime to walk away with the victory. 

Breanna Stewart led the Storm with 27 points, while Sue Bird chipped in 19 points and six assists. (FULL BOX SCORE)

The series now shifts to Phoenix where it is do or die for the Mercury. The WNBA Semifinals are a best of five series, so the Strom just need one win to advance.

Game Three is scheduled for Friday at Talking Stick Resort Arena, tipoff is set for 7:00 pm. You can watch all the action live on ESPNews & NBA TV.

Dempsey hangs his cleats up

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Dempsey hangs his cleats up

One of the greatest American soccer players in the history of the game is calling it a career. Clint Dempsey announced his retirement early Wednesday. Dempsey has been a thorn in the side of soccer fans here in Portland since 2013 when he joined Cascadia rivals Seattle Sounders, adding fuel to the fire of one of the best rivalries in MLS

Dempsey played in 136 matches with the Sounders, scoring 57 career goals and helping the club win its first MLS Cup in 2016. For as good as Dempsey was in MLS, he really made his name on the international stage and abroad. Dempsey had 141 caps with the USMNT, is tied with Landon Donovan for the most goals scored in USMNT history (57), is the only American to score in three World Cups, and was voted U.S. Soccer Male Athlete of the Year in 2007, 2011, and 2012.

Dempsey also played abroad in the English Premier League (EPL) with Fulham (2006-2012) and Tottenham (2012-2013). He played in 263 matches and scored 72 goals, setting the record for goals scored by an American player in the EPL. Between MLS and EPL he scored 155 goals for his career. 

Soccer clubs from MLS and the EPL showed their love for Dempsey on social media.