Tuesday, January 30

Permission to Win

"You know who I am? I'm the coach who can't get fired!"

There's been some grumbling in Sonics Land. When your team is struggling to reach .500 and threatening to leave town, that's not surprising. What is surprising is that fans aren't grumbling about the losing, but the winning.

Content to write off the season before the all-star break, many Seattle basketball fans are hoping the Sonics lose as many games as possible for a chance to land coveted college star Greg Oden. Normally, I might see the logic in this. It's not every day you get a chance to land a great big man like Oden, who has been compared to future hall of famers David Robinson and Tim Duncan. Still, it is only a chance—unlike the old days, having the worst record in the league is no guarantee for landing the top pick. The Sonics could tank a salvageable season for Tiago Splitter.

The thing that really kills the "Lose Now to Win Later" strategy is that even if the Sonics somehow land Oden, Seattle might never see him play.

While Big Boy Bennett is still talking about about a "Pepsi-Light" arena for Renton, there's still a real possibility that he's just running out the clock on the Key Arena lease so he can pack the team off to Okie-Land. Haven't you wondered why the Sonics haven't made a single move all season to improve the team?

If this is the Sonics' last season is Seattle, is this the way you want the team to go out, intentionally losing games so that Oklahoma can have the next San Antonio Spurs? (You know Bob Hill must be having flashbacks.)

I say win now. Make the playoffs. Leave it all on the floor. Go out in glory. Go Sonics.


Anonymous said...

Color me less than enthusiastic about the Sonics' playoff chances. Even if the Sonics did make the playoffs, they'd be out before you could count to 3. And they ain't gonna make the playoffs.

Kevin Durant and Greg Oden are as close to a sure thing in the NBA draft you're going to get, outside of maybe Duncan or Shaq. The Sonics have no chance at doing anything with the roster they have, and trying to win games at this point is stupid. Every game they win puts them closer to getting the #11 pick in the draft, which is of no use to them. They desparately need a big man who can play defense, and not Nick "positioning and hustle" Collison defense - I mean block shots and scare the crap out of people defense.

Bottom Line: Do you think San Antonio fans would rather have won an extra 8 meaningless games in 1997 in a hopeless pursuit of the playoffs, or would they rather have had Tim Duncan for the past decade?

Mr. Iverson said...
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Anonymous said...

I'm with you, Paul.

Anonymous said...


Seattle's record before Watson started: 13-22

Seattle's record since Watson began starting: 4-5

I know it's a small piece of evidence, but it seems pretty clear to me that the Sonics have been playing better with Earl starting and Luke off the bench than the other way around. Plus, Earl didn't get a chance to play with Rashard as a SF, like Luke did. I say keep Luke on the bench, keep giving him decent minutes, and deal him in the offseason.

Oh, unless you're trying to lose games. Then start Mike Wilks and tell Earl that Luke's better than him.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, Paul, but the playoffs just ain't happenin' this year. Plus, i don't think OKC is as viable an option as we all might think. I really think the Hornets will stay there for at least another year, if not forever. I don't get the feeling N.O. is all that antsy about getting an NBA team back, and I don't think Shinn is all that excited about going there. When the dust settles, I see the Sonics staying here, the Hornets in OKC, and N.O. maybe getting an expansion team down the road. Just a hunch.

That said, bring on the losses and bring on Oden or Durant!

Anonymous said...

Nuss, you're too pessimistic. Look at the schedule, the Sonics get a lot of easy games in the next few months. And it'snot like the TWolves, Clips, Warriors, or whoever is ahead of Seattle can't be beat.

For the Sonics to make the playoffs, they've got to continue to get good production from Collison and Wilcox, steal a few on the road, and voila!

Anonymous said...

I think what this team needs (among other things) is a shooter, especially with Rashard out. I really wish they would sign Casey Jacobsen. He's available and is cheap.

Anonymous said...

Losing is for sucks. Play to win, baby.

Anonymous said...

we are 3-1 since rashard came back. i thought this was a sonics fan site..you guys have no faith. if you knew anything about the sonics, you would know that they are still trying to make the playoffs as many of the players said online and during interviews after games. we are playing a lot of the teams ahead of us in the next couple weeks and can knock them out to make the 8th spot. we have been playing a lot better since rashard came back (winning by double figures in 3 of 4 games with 2 on the road), which makes sense because rashard is our second lead scorer and opens up the floor for us. the sonics have a good chance of making it, but i don't know about advancing to the second round. i wanna see them do good on possibly their last season in seattle, GO SONICS! (and LAKERS)

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