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Take 2

A different spin on sports by The Seattle Times staff and readers.

November 24, 2012 at 8:00 PM

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What Seattle Times sports readers are saying


Referee who called handball is lucky

Some thoughts on the Sounders’ loss to the Los Angeles Galaxy. I was a professional soccer referee in the late 1970s, doing college, high school and the infamous ethnic leagues in St. Paul and Minneapolis. There was an unwritten rule: In a tight game with much on the line and an action by a player that is questionable in your judgment, you’d better make a call that that doesn’t affect the score or a series.

If you look closely, the Sounder, Adam Johansson, was turning and a bit off balance when the ball, no more than three feet away was kicked into his arms. The official, Mark Geiger, said “he made himself large.” That’s a first for me. I guess he should have tucked his hands in his pocket and fell over from being off-balance. A hand foul must have the intention of moving the ball away from the action or altering it and preventing a score or pass that would result in a score.

All Mr. Geiger had to do was point the other way at the corner-kick area and nobody would have said a word. But he is lucky. If he had made that call in any other country where soccer is sacrosanct, he may not have made it out of the stadium (or the ethnic league in Minnesota).

– Jim Russi, Yakima

Montero just isn't worth it

Steve Kelley has written what many of us have known for a very long time (“Time for Sounders to cut Fredy and focus on Eddie,” Nov. 16). How the Sounders can justify paying Fredy Montero $750,000 is unfathomable.

I do not dispute that this lad has some tidy foot skills and that he can sometimes execute some marvelous passing. But he has consistently failed to produce on big occasions. He repeatedly ghosts to the weak side of the ball and lets Eddie Johnson take the brunt of punishment the opposition doles out.

The fans deserve better, and they deserve more for their money.

– Tony Chursky, Federal Way

Midfield is where team falls short

The most talented forwards can’t do a whole lot unless they can receive the ball off nice passing from their midfielders. Furthermore, most games are won/lost in the midfield because midfield play creates the space and passing lanes for the striking forwards. If the midfield play is sloppy you will many times see the forwards dropping back to assist or even play defense!

Both Eddie Johnson and Fredy Montero have fantastic foot skills and shooting abilities but their efforts are stymied by the lack of talent surrounding them.

– Jim Deller, Seattle


Wilson is antithesis of Raiders’ Russell

When I watch Russell Wilson on Sundays, and I see a young, agile, determined athlete, running our offense. Everyone makes mistakes, but I see a driven person, getting better every week.

Then, off the field, you see how this young man conducts himself..Humble, sincere, dedicated. It’s like he wants to develop long-term relationships with his teammates, or something.

I hear he stays late, treats everyone with respect, and has earned the trust of his teammates.

There was once a first pick, chosen in the draft by Al Davis. this guy had it all, huge man. Huge arm. Huge contract. Huge disappointment.

He arrived late, was never in shape, didn’t study and prepare to succeed on the field, and didn’t earn the respect of his teammates. He’s out of the league now.

Russell Wilson is no JaMarcus Russell. Thank God.

We here in Seattle get to see the development of what will surely be a great leader. We get to see winning football being played by our Seahawks for many years to come.

– Keith Brown, Seattle


Another suggestion for Safeco screen

Mr. Shurgot (“Hot to use the giant screen”, Backtalk, Nov. 18) almost got it right, but showing hydro races on the Big Screen is way too seasonal. Since the folks at Safeco Field are there to see baseball, I suggest the Mariners’ owners subscribe to MLB Network and show real baseball games to entertain folks who came there to see one.

– Kaye Kilgour, Seattle


Ducks wear their arrogance

I suppose I should feel bad about Oregon’s recent loss to Stanford. I don’t. Really, it’s all about what they wear.

The Ducks’ uniforms, alas, are the apotheosis of awfulness, designed with unwarranted arrogance by what must be the same bunch that created those gym suits for embarrassed high-school girls. Also, I’ve never seen school colors of fish scale, all with feathers sewn on. And the “O’s” on the helmet backs? A smarmy “eat my dust” message for pursuing players? Please.

I would celebrate, even cheer, a powerful Pac-12 football rival like Oregon if their players weren’t clad in what appear to be loaners from the clown locker at Barnum and Bailey.

– Bob Graham, Union

Send us your backtalk: Letters bearing real names, addresses and telephone numbers for verification are considered for publication. Please limit letters to 125 words or less. They are subject to editing and become the property of The Times. Fax them to 206-464-3255, or mail to: Backtalk, Seattle Times Sports, P.O. Box 70, Seattle, WA 98111. Or email to:

If you'd like to write a Take 2 post, email Sports Editor Don Shelton at or

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