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Ship's Log, Feb 12: Team of the Sound

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4 min read
Mike Fiechtner/Seattle Sounders FC

Tomorrow the Seattle Sounders open Longacres. In some ways it is a demarcation of an era. Most of Sounders history has been marked by leagues/teams failing, with one significant advancement.

This one is different. In some ways the prequel to the Longacres era was the Covid-crushed hope for Tacoma Defiance building out the Sounders brand in the South Sound.

That was the same time the Sounders via the RAVE Foundation started building free-to-play all-weather mini-pitches in Tacoma, Renton, Yakima, Burien and more places that aren't Seattle.

When the Sounders first entered MLS they embraced Seattle. Their local broadcast was on a Seattle station. Portland two years later was the regional team, available on Root. The Sounders were rarely available live on the cable channel, being the least significant of Root's many pro teams.

But around 2018 the Seattle Sounders started to declare that they were not just a Seattle team, but a Team of the Sound.

This mirrors the other top-flight pro teams in the area. The Sonics used to be so popular in British Columbia that Vancouver eventually got a team. The Mariners are the "local" team in several states. The same is true for the Seahawks.

The Seattle Seahawks even travel their players during the offseason, visiting Eastern Washington, Alaska, B.C. and other places.

Longacres is another step in that progress for the Sounders to be more than Seattle's team.

Longtime readers probably know that I'm a South King County kid. I now love Renton, the City of Dragons.

In their previous era the Sounders have shown some love here. There are Academy players in the area and a handful of Sounders/Defiance players have lived here, too.

But Longacres is a bigger deal.

Just as the VMAC empowers the city to declare "Home of the Seahawks" the city can also declare that they are the "Home of the Sounders."

This story isn't just about Renton, though.

Have you met a Dryside Supporter after Brad Evans goes out to Yakima or Spokane for a watch party? Those smiles are nearly as big as they are for a home win.

When residents of the 253 start singing the praises of Neagle, Rowe and now Hawkins they glow. Maple Valley and the Tri-Cities want to wrestle over claiming Atencio – both win, and so do the Sounders as they embrace the region and not just its biggest city.

Burien has two mini-pitches and a player-resident. Issaquah has a player-resident.

The ferry to Bainbridge gets more time with Frei than it does from fictitious Dr. Derek Grey (who somehow lived on a mountain that had a secret highway to the airport but was also a ferry ride to the hospital).

The center of the Sounders will always be Seattle. It's the center of the county, the metro area and the state.

The vibes? Those are bigger.

Sammy, carnations, practice fields, homes, mini-pitches, fans – they're all over the region.

Not all of us are Seattle. We are People of the Sound. This team we love is the Team of the Sound – always has been, now it's more Salish Sea than ever before. To quote a bad poet (myself) "we are born of sea and sky; carved from peaks and pine."

We're Sounders.

Welcome to Renton.

– Dave

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Catching up on Sounder at Heart

Reign win

Nos Audietis will be doing a live podcast recording on Tuesday, Feb. 20 at Project 9 Brewery in the Maple Leaf neighborhood (it was originally scheduled for Feb. 13 but had to be moved). The show should run from 7-8 PM, but they are planning to do a little trivia night that will start at 6:30 PM. This is doubling as a fundraiser for BF Day Elementary's fifth-grade science field trip, with 10% of sales helping fund the endeavor. There are no tickets required and this is a first-come, first-served seating situation, but if you'd like to pre-purchase a pint so that we have a better idea of how many people to expect, you can do so here.

Looking back at the weekend's news

Everything else you need to know.

Brazil's men aren't going to the 2024 Paris Olympics. The two-time defending champs are out. Paraguay and Argentina are the CONMEBOL reps. The US and Dominican Republic are Concacaf's reps.

Man who has spent 8% of his waking life on Football Manager hired by real-life club in Iceland. Never let anyone tell you that video gaming isn't worthwhile. This one person turned it into a job.

The Greatest Rivalry in Sports: How Extreme Soccer Fans Combat the State. Brown Political Review looks at how violent supporters of soccer teams fight against their government, or even fight to support it. 

Girona Finances 2022/23. The Swiss Ramble notes the finances that empower Girona's rise – and that Barcelona claims to have made nearly twenty times what every other La Liga club has.

Tired: Trialists
Wired: Matches that never officially happened.
TFC beat Columbus 4-2, maybe. No one was supposed to know.

The Puyallup Tribe of Indians released a Super Bowl ad during the local commercial breaks. One of the callouts is the area hosting the Men's World Cup in 2026. You can watch the ad here.

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