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Ship's Log, Dec. 12: Sounders of Theseus

The Sounders keep getting rebuilt by those of us who built it.

Last Updated
4 min read

After 15 years, the Seattle Sounders made their new logo social-media official on Monday. It was the same day that the MLS trade window opened, though Seattle didn't move anyone. Just a few days ago they parted ways with nearly a dozen players between the first team and Defiance.

One of those leaving defined the era – one of the higher deities in the pantheon.

Another of the inner circle could be gone.

This offseason is going to be a transition. Only three players from the 2016 MLS Cup winners remain. Only two coaches from that period remain. Only one from the '16 Defiance season is still in the organization.

That's not new. We've watched tear-downs, rebuilds and reloads before. Fortunately for the Sounders those have always gone well. The only poor seasons were when they tried to run it out one last time – one of those resulted in an MLS Cup and the other resulted in a CCL title.

It may be unfair as we Sounders still have Brian Schmetzer, but the club is continually rebuilt around us. Even those of us in the stands have new people nearby year-to-year.

New brand. New players. New training home.

These Sounders of Theseus remain Sounders, though.

We've got a clear way to answer the question as to whether they are Sounders or not. The nameplate hasn't changed. There are a few other ways that philosophers could look at the Sounders and still now they remain Sounders.

There are strings stretching back to Dec. 11, 1973 and through the previous league-eras. There are former players who are now leaders – Waibel, Schmetzer, Webber, Graham. Former players who are community icons – Evans, Zakuani, Jackson, and more. Former players who stay for love of the Sound – Hurtado, Rowe, Schweitzer, O'Brien, Farrell.

Our good ship SaH Sounders is built of our sinew, our spit, our woods, our songs, our very identity and traditions.

People leave. Every few months there's change. Sometimes that change is massive and there's a disconnect from our moments of glory.

People come. They have heard the story, seen the tale, experienced our joy. But they don't know yet what it means to sail on the SaH Sounders.

They'll learn.

Whether they are a former MLS star, a youngster who moved to Tukwila from Africa, an international who plied their trade in South America and Europe they learn what it means to be one of us.

The Sounders of Theseus? We are who we are because the ship keeps getting rebuilt by those who used to sail it. Our continuity is why the Sounders haven't been a club like the Crew that win titles but surround those with losing seasons. Our continuity is why we aren't Montreal, confused about history and today. Our continuity is why we aren't LAFC, crowned early but uncomfortable with struggle.

We're the Seattle frickin' Sounders. Our ship never stops sailing.

  • Dave
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Catching up on Sounder at Heart

It’s been a busy couple days, so you may have missed a few things on the site:

Looking back at the week's news

Congratulations to former Sounders Marc Nichols, Jimmy Medranda, and Jake Morris on winning MLS Cup 2023; Don Garber says the league is staying at 30 until after the men's World Cup; The MLS trade window is open; the NWSL expansion draft is Tuesday - Reign will lose two.

Columbus Crew won their third MLS Cup in their fourth appearance in the DP era. They've done with with four different coaches, three different owners, two different stadiums and all under the radar. Massive Report's photo gallery is a celebration of a team that went into the Final as the stronger side and played like themselves through the first half, but needed to weather LAFC's attempted comeback. LAFC will have to rebuild, as many of their key talents are out of contract.

Don Garber's MLS state of the league: What he said and what he meant. Also, the target cities for potential expansion reads like a best of the USL – Phoenix, Tampa, Detroit and still Sacramento.

The Inter Messi world tour starts in Hong Kong against their national team. Then they're going to Saudi Arabia for two matches, something they denied just a few weeks ago.

Dean Smith set to become Charlotte FC's next Head Coach. No, not that one, the other one.

U.S. Open Cup amateur qualifying is settled. Ballard and 31 other sides start their quest for the cup in the First Round March 19-21.

A new owner for Portland Thorns could go final any day now, or in months, it's a big transaction, so time is what it is.

Former Houston Dash head coach James Clarkson is suing just about everybody associated with the NWSL and Houston.

One in five Women's World Cup players subjected to online abuse, report finds.

Pacific Northwest Soccer

Reign Academy produced some college national champions.

The Stars dropped their home opener to San Diego. They host Baltimore on Sunday.

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