March 21-27, 2011
- Good Week — The Ultimate Fighting Championship at KeyArena attracts a sellout throng of 14,212, proving that the sport, no matter what you might think of it, is a huge hit with general Seattle rabble. Face it: the public can’t resist an amusement with cage matches, knockout kicks and elbows delivered straight to the chops. Sure, it’s primal and in many ways barbaric. But consider the tax revenue.
- Bad Week — Franklin Gutierrez’s stomach woes — officially called “slow digestive tract” — flare up again, mandating that the club’s star center fielder open the season on the disabled list. Gutierrez has had this problem since last May, and there seems no quick end in sight. Gutierrez blazed through April in 2010, then spent the rest of the season in the tundra, fighting the same stomach malady. Not good for an already challenged team.
- Sunday, March 27 — The Mariners fall to 14-12-2 in spring training games (5-4 loss to Texas) despite home runs by Chone Figgins and minor leaguer Kyle Seager. The Mariners are getting set to open the 2011 season on Friday (April 1) in Oakland, where they will face Trevor Cahill, who sports a 5-plus ERA this spring. FYI: The Mariners usually get beat by guys with inflated ERAs.
- Saturday, March 26 — Nathan Adrian of Bremerton adds to his medal haul at the NCAA Swimming & Diving Championships by taking the 100 meters in a time of 41.10 and participating in the winning 400 freestyle relay. Adrian, along with ex-Husky Ariana Koukors, becomes one of America’s top Olympic hopefuls for the London Olympics.
- Friday, March 25 — The Sounders end their scoring drought after 259 minutes, spread over 2 1/2 matches, but can only manage a 1-1 tie with the Houston Dynamo at Qwest Field. Given their 26-6 advantage in shots, this should have been a win. Where’s the new striker?
- Thursday, March 24— Adrian, a student at the University of California, breaks his own American record in the 50-meter freestyle with a time of 18.66 seconds at the NCAA Swimming & Diving Championships, once again certifying himself as the world’s best short-distance swimmer and a favorite for at least two golds (50, relay) in London in 2012.
- Wednesday, March 23 — One day after WSU coach Ken Bone suspends DeAngelo Casto for a game due to a marijuana bust, athletic director Bill Moos lifts it, just in time for Casto to score 11 points and help lead the Cougars to the semifinals of the National Invitational Tournament with a 69-66 overtime victory over Northwestern. The Cougars still can’t interest Pullmanites in the proceedings, only 5,905 of whom show up for the game.
- Tuesday, March 22— Mariners manager Eric Wedge makes a surprising spring training move, announcing that Jack Wilson will move from shortstop to second base, with Brendan Ryan taking over at short. This sets up a Wilson trade (he’s making $5 million) as soon as Dustin Ackley has had enough Pacific Coast League at-bats, probably by no later than June.
- Monday, March 21 — The Washington State Cougars, with Klay Thompson scoring 21 points, move a step closer to the semifinals of the National Invitational Tournament with a 74-64 victory over Oklahoma State. Attendance in Pullman is pathetic, as just 5,201 show up, proving that WSU is a long way from being a big-time program.
“That Was The Week That Was (TW3)” is published every Monday as part of Sportspress Northwests package of home-page features collectively titled, The Rotation.
The Rotations weekly schedule:
- Monday: That Was The Week That Was (TW3) A snarky, day-by-day review of the week just ended.
- Tuesday: Wayback Machine — Sports historian David Eskenazi’s deep dive into local sports history, replete with photo eye candy.
- Wednesday: Nobody Asks But Us — We ask, and answer, fun and quirky questions nobody else is asking.
- Thursday: Water Cooler Cool — Art Thiel takes on the weekend for the benefit of the more casual fan.
- Friday: Top 5 List — The alpha and omega of Northwest sports, at least as far as we’re concerned.