Friday, August 19, 2011

TOP 9: Ways to Improve Seattle Sports

Contrary to popular belief, Seattle Sports are not perfect. Shocking, I know.

9) Address Transportation Issues on Game Days

Whether you’re going to a Seahawks, Mariners, Huskies, or Sounders game, chances are you will run into a heavy dose of slow moving traffic. It’s inevitable.

Seattle has major transportation issues as it is, but those issues often seem magnified when we go watch our favorite teams in person. From the limited parking spaces at outrageous prices (Dude, forget it. I’m not paying $40 to park in your crummy lot), to the lack of public riding options, something needs to be done to help the average fan get to and from the game.
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While the Link Light Rail is a start, it pales in comparison to Portland’s public transportation. In Portland, the city’s Max light rail runs throughout the downtown metro area and out into the extending suburbs. Fans can ride to and from games at the Rose Garden arena, or park blocks away for free and make the final leg of the trip aboard the Max.

8) Stop Complaining about the Mariners owner, Hiroshi Yamauchi

Half of you probably didn’t even know who Hiroshi Yamauchi was until now. Exactly the supposed problem.

Yamauchi is the owner of Nintendo, which owns the Mariners. Yamauchi has only stepped in the United States once… and that was to officially buy the team. In short, he’s not a very involved owner.

His lack of involvement and appearances (along with the Mariner prolonged playoff drought) have inspired some people to create the group “Fire Nintendo” which has a ludicrous goal of getting rid of, you guessed it, Nintendo. I was actually asked to join this group, but declined on this reason.

If a dude is writing out $100 Million dollar checks for the team salary each year and keeping the Mariners safely in Seattle, I don’t care what he does. I just know that I don’t want to go through the Clay Bennett fiasco again.

Read this for more, um, “analyzing” from Seattlesportsnet on Fire Nintendo.

7) Send “Donkey From Shrek” Out on a Raft Directed towards Australia

Eric Wedge: “Hey Figgy! You’ve really done a great job sitting on the bench the last couple weeks and I think you deserve a vacation; More specifically, a sea vacation. Get it? Because a Mariner is a type of sailor and, y’now, we’re the Mariners and all, so, yeah.”

Donkey: “Gee whiz coach! I would love to do something like that! Am I going on a Yacht or Cruise Ship?”

Wedge: “Oh, something better. Me and Jackie Z will pick you up at 2:00 AM tomorrow. Thanks for all your hard work.”

Instead of loading him up on a cruise ship or yacht, Jack Zduriencik knocks Donkey out and puts him on a raft directed towards Australia. This is an easy, cost efficient way to get rid of annoying players. This new idea could change baseball.

6) Open up the Upper Bowl for Sounders Games

Every Sounders game in its 2 ½ years history has been a sellout… well, sort of. CenturyLink Field can hold about 67,000 people, but the team has always closed off the upper bowl lowering the capacity to 35,700.

Think about the plusses of opening the top half. Yeah, you might not earn a sellout every game, but does that really matter? You would sell more tickets and concessions, which equals more money.

Until the good people at the former Seahawks Stadium opt to fill EVERY SINGLE SEAT in the place for Sounders matches, we won’t truly have sold out any games at all.

5) Give Aaron Levine more credit

C’mon Seattle. Let’s give this Q13 Fox Sports director a little more credit.

Most Sports shows on the news are unbiased and merely just read a box score and follow along with the highlight reel. They’re boring and lack any interesting statements.

However, there is an exception to that rule. Aaron Levine’s nightly show, Q it up Sports is totally Seattle biased, will hate on guys like Clay Bennett and Howard Shultz, and WILL tell us what he TRULY thinks about a certain player. All these factors add up to make the show interesting. Guys like Levine are a dying breed in this country, and it’s time we recognize him a bit more.

4) Replace Key Arena

Yeah, I said it. The Key needs to go.

One person will say, “Well, why don’t we just renovate it? That won’t cost as much as building a new arena.” Renovating Key Arena would be like putting 20 pounds of makeup on an ugly chick. Eventually, we’ll see what’s under there.

Plus, didn’t we just renovate it 15 years ago? What did that do for us?

And don’t tell me Key Arena is just fine and can hold a modern day NBA team. Compared to the Portland’s Rose Garden and Chicago’s American Airlines arena, the Key is an absolute dump.

We don’t want to go through this renovation process every two decades, so let’s just nip this thing in the bud right now and replace the aging monstrosity with a newer, bigger, better-looking monstrosity. Yes, it will cost money, but it’s worth it for the civic value the new arena will provide.

3) Hire Gus Johnson to be the Mariners’ Play-by-play announcer

I don’t really have a problem with current M’s play by play announcer Dave Sims. He’s fairly entertaining and knows what he’s talking about. But he’s nothing compared to this man:

Gus Johnson, excitement extraordinaire.

I don’t care how much it takes to pull Johnson from FOX Sports. Pay him $20 Million, maybe $30 Million. All I know is he can make anything exciting, regardless of the situation.

Felix strikes someone out? Johnson freaks out.

Mike Carp hits a home run? Johnson explodes with euphoria.

If the Mariners magically convinced Johnson to work for them, I would watch every single game, hands down. Get ‘er done, Howard Lincoln.

2) Get rid of the Starbucks Drinking, Bike Lane Riding, “I’m better than you AND sports” People.

Okay, so maybe that’s a little harsh. But still, these people are the bane of a Seattle Sports fan’s existence.

GROTSDBLRIBTYASP are seemingly the individuals who shoot down every proposed tax increase that even remotely relates to sports (no matter how much money would be coming to them on the back end). You think in someplace like sports crazed Philadelphia you’ll find large groups of people like this? Not a chance. This is strictly Seattle based.

The problem with Seattle is there isn’t enough sports passion. Why? Two things. One, the city is known for its culture and art, which are usually a conflicting force to sports. And two, the city has gotten so used to mediocrity from its teams that Seattle has accepted that and grown numb to sports.

How do we fix it? Here are two ideas.

a) Have the GROTSDBLRIBTYASP warm up to sports. Bring your anti-sports friend to a game and make him/her realize how fun and entertaining they are.

b) Have one of our major league teams (Mariners or Seahawks) go on a legitimate title run in the coming years to fire up EVERYONE in the city for sports again.

1) Challenge Clay Bennett to a draw for the rights to the Oklahoma City Thunder

Step One: Fly Down to Oklahoma and knock on Clay Bennett’s door.

Step Two: Challenge him to a draw at high noon for the rights to the OKC Thunder. Bennett can’t back down from an ol’ Western style fight, so he accepts.

Step Three: He challenges you to 12 paces and you oblige. But at six paces you stop, turn around, rip off your shirt revealing a Shawn Kemp jersey, and obliterate Bennett by using a rocket launcher from the video game “Star Wars Battlefront II”.

Step Four: After that you basically just take the team back to Seattle and tell them to play there and they have to do what you say because you own them. It’s just business, folks.

Reach Nathan Parsons at