BY Deidre Silva 08:00AM 05/09/2011

Crystal Balls: Predictions for the week

Who woulda thunk it? The Mariners aren’t the worst attendance draw in the league! David Stern blasts Bill Gates, anglers pull in some beautiful bass.

The Sockit Wenches, right, and Grave Danger skate during a showdown last year. / Chris Jones

The past? That’s so yesterday. Sportspress Northwest introduces a new weekly feature, Crystal Balls, penned by Deidre Silva. It’s a look into this week’s future that the Amazing Kreskin would envy:

Who predicted that the Memphis Grizzlies’ defense would suffocate Kevin Durant, the NBA’s  leading scorer? Not me.  Still, check out this week’s predictions. And remember, the smart money is in your pocket.

Mariners road trip
Prediction: Given Cleveland’s wretched crowd numbers and Mariners’ low profile, three-game visit will provoke negative attendance.

I’m from Maryland, so forecasting a disaster for Baltimore in the three-game series between the O’s and M’s starting Tuesday is a no-win situation. As it will be for the Orioles (sorry, Dad). The Mariners roll into Cleveland Friday at .500, but the glory will be short-lived.

Meanwhile, mothers everywhere flood team offices with letters after Sunday saying that they are done with seeing pink baseball bats used by MLB on Mothers Day. While the symbolism is for the noble goal of raising breast cancer awareness, women offer alternatives. They write: “Imagine how striking it would be if the fielders wore pink hats.  Or why not make the batting helmets pink?  That’s protective. That’s motherly. Honoring women with bats is just so…uh, offensive.” They make a good point.

Rat City Rollergirls
Grave Danger falls to Sockit Wenches Saturday night at KeyArena; July championship up for grabs.

After a shameful  116-76 loss in March to the Throttle Rockets, the Sockit Wenches hip check the Grave Danger off its princess perch. Wench jammer Penny Racer will guide her team to a reckless four-jam tear, setting the stage for a bitter GD loss. Derby Liberation Front skates nasty against the Throttle Rockets but DLF blockers spend too much time watching from the penalty box while Rockets’ jammers breeze through the depleted pack.

American Bass Association Lake Washington Team Tournament
Someone says, “Ohhhh ….now, there’s a beauty;” Gabe Lowe of Westport and Tom Librande of Edmonds leave competition in the dust.

Last year, these two anglers were out of the money until their fifth tournament but still managed to surge through the Washington West leaderboard and into the Northwest Team Classic, where they landed ninth. The duo is off to a better start this season so look for Lowe and Librande to build on last month’s paycheck, win this weekend at Lake Sammamish and power into the season-ending Team Classic tournament. It is there, however, that they will surely run into the bass buzzsaw known as the David Kromm/Aaron Echternkamp boat. Working the Washington East tournament circuit, Kromm, from Kennewick, and Echternkamp, from Moses Lake, teamed up since for 2005 for total tournament cash winnings of $21,000, plus last year’s Classic grand prize of a Ranger/Mercury boat package, valued at more than $30,000. Both teams pulled in 10 fish during last year’s riveting two-day final, but the Kromm/Echternkamp haul totaled six pounds more. This proves that size really does matter.

NBA playoffs
Riffing off his comments in Sacramento last week, NBA commissioner David Stern blames a “disengaged” Bill Gates for letting the Sonics leave Seattle in 2008.

Confused by the affront, Gates explains that he was likely busy helping humanity in Africa and just didn’t check voice mails.

Meanwhile, in real basketball news, the Celtics’ Rajon Rondo taps into his inner Willis Reed to return from a grisly elbow injury and dishes out an inspirational 22 assists Friday night to force game seven in Miami. Kobe and Phil watch the Players Championship and plan their NFL fantasy picks.

Have your own predictions for the week? Leave them below or hit us on Twitter @SportspressNW or on Facebook.


  • Midgads

    C’mon the Sockit Wenches!!

  • Zen_Sorcere

    While I’d prefer this prediction over my own, I don’t think it’s likely. Grave Danger’s jammer roster is amazingly good, with Carmen GetSome, Georgia O’Grief, and Re-AnimateHer alone, not to mention the rest of line-up. The Sockit Wenches, though my favorite team, don’t have quite the solid base of skaters they did last year, as they have been subjected to some injuries…Juliet Bravo is an amazing all-around skater, but she can’t carry the team by herself, and the rest of the jamming squad has bee a little more hit-and-miss this year so far. And with Anya Heels out for the season, I don’t think the Sockit Wenches have the ability to beat Grave Danger this year. My prediction: Grave Danger wins, by about 30 points.

    As for the other bout, DLF is still in recovery mode after losing a bunch of key players a couple season ago, and the Throttle Rockets, like Grave Danger, have a solid team right now. TR will beat DLF pretty soundly, probably by at least 60, probably doubling DLF’s score.

  • Kathryn Conway

    Pink batting helmets. Wow.

  • Skysport

    I’m cool with pink hats. I’m cool with pink wristbands. I’m cool with pink shoes. But the pink bats have got to go. It almost makes me ill to look at them. It was a bad idea, it’s time for them to go. Now I’m off to drive my pink car….varooom.

  • Michael Kaiser

     ”Saving humanity?”  Somehow society carried on, and would have continued to carry on, and will continue to carry on, with or without Bill Gates.  Sounds like possibly you have been in Seattle too long.