Sports with Art Thiel

Kirsten Kendrick's weekly sports Q & A with Art Thiel.

Top 5 Seattle Sports Stories Of 2013

Dec 27, 2013
John Froschauer / AP Photo

From a blockbuster baseball signing to talk of the Super Bowl, there was a lot for Seattle sports fans to smile about this year. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel names his top five sports stories of the year.

A Lot At Stake For Seahawks On Sunday

Dec 20, 2013
Kathy Willens / AP Photo

Even though the Seahawks have the best record in football (12-2) and have already made it to the playoffs, that doesn't mean they can coast through Sunday's game against the Cardinals.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says a win would mean a lot.

Mariners Say 'Hello, Cano,' But Thiel Says Deal With Slugger 'Stupid'

Dec 13, 2013
Seattle Mariners

The Mariners have officially welcomed All-Star slugger and second baseman Robinson Cano to Seattle with one of the biggest contracts in Major League Baseball history and some other new players to help support him.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel called the deal "stupid" but said it had to be done.

Fans Help Seahawks Soar to New Heights

Dec 6, 2013
Scott Eklund / AP Photo

There’s no place like home. That’s definitely true for the Seattle Seahawks. They’re undefeated at CenturyLink Field this season with a margin of victory that hasn’t been seen in the NFL in 40 years.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the Seahawks will move a step closer to having home field advantage in the playoffs if they beat the 49ers on Sunday in San Francisco, a place where they haven’t won since 2008.

Elaine Thompson / Associated Press

University of Washington head football coach Steve Sarkisian has accepted a coaching job at the University of Southern California, USC announced on Monday.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the news "wasn't a surprise."

“I believe I wrote when he was hired five years ago that he would last in this job until USC has a head-coaching vacancy,” said Art. 

No World Series 'Unfortunate Legacy' for Retiring Mariners Pres.

Nov 29, 2013
Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

Retiring Mariners president Chuck Armstrong did a lot for the team in his nearly three decades in the front office. But it’s what he wasn’t able to accomplish that will be his lasting legacy: get the Mariners to the World Series.

Armstrong’s retirement announcement this week comes at a time of major discontent among fans. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says even more change is needed at the top.

UW Football Coach Steve Sarkisian Under Pressure

Nov 22, 2013
Alex Gallardo / AP Photo

The University of Washington football team plays Oregon State in Corvallis Saturday night. UW's starting quarterback is nursing an injury and they’re coming off a big loss against UCLA last week. 

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says there’s no rest for the weary; Washington State is waiting in the wings.

Harvin Debut to Make 9-1 Seahawks Even Stronger

Nov 15, 2013
Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The 9-1 Seahawks host the 2-7 Vikings Sunday at CenturyLink Field. The match-up has been made more interesting with word that wide receiver Percy Harvin will likely make his much-anticipated debut with the Seahawks against his former team, Minnesota.

Harvin was added to the active roster this week after hip surgery in August. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says that has a lot of people excited.  

Sounders' Season Over after 2nd Loss to Portland in Semifinals

Nov 8, 2013
Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Seattle Sounders’ season has come to an end after a second playoff loss to Portland Thursday night. The Timbers beat the Sounders 3-2 in Portland to win the two-game, aggregate-goal semifinal series 5-3.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the game was an embarrassing end to the Sounders’ rocky season.  

What 7-1 Seahawks Need to Do to Avoid 'Circling the Drain'

Nov 1, 2013
Tom Gannam / The Associated Press

The Seahawks are 7 and 1 at the midpoint of the season as they prepare to host the winless Tampa Bay Buccaneers at CenturyLink Field Sunday afternoon.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says despite their record, the Seahawks have some big problems they need to fix.  

Don James Prepared UW Players for Football, Life

Oct 25, 2013
Ted S. Warren / Associated Press

Tributes are planned this weekend for legendary University of Washington football coach Don James. He died last Sunday from pancreatic cancer at the age of 80. James coached the Huskies from 1975 until 1992, leading them to six conference titles and a share of the 1991 national championship.

The Husky marching band will perform a special tribute to James during halftime of Saturday night’s game against California at Husky Stadium. A public memorial service is planned for 3 p.m. Sunday at Hec Edmundson Pavilion on the UW campus.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says Don James will be remembered for what he taught players on the field, and off.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Seattle Sounders play FC Dallas in Texas on Saturday. It’s yet another chance for the team to clinch a playoff berth. They’re running out of chances. 

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says a lot has been going wrong for the Sounders recently.  

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Washington Huskies host the Oregon Ducks Saturday in a highly-anticipated game. It begins at 1 p.m. at Husky Stadium in Seattle, but fans will be gathering well before that, with cable station ESPN featuring the matchup in their weekly “College GameDay” program—a first for Washington.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says this year, the game is more than just a regional rivalry; it’s a matchup between two nationally-ranked teams.  

David J. Phillip / AP Photo

For the first time in team history, the Seattle Seahawks have a 4-0 start. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel calls that a “tremendous start.”

“I thought they were going to stumble in the first game against Carolina, and they nearly did,” he said. “I thought that was going to be a problem, because this team had a lot of things to get right in the exhibition season that I don’t think were quite there, especially in the offensive line.”

Stephen Brashear / AP Photo

The Mariners end the 2013 season on Sunday. It’s their eighth losing season in 10 years. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says it's time for some big changes, but he doubts any will be made.  

Katsumi Kasahara / AP File Photo

The death of Mariners' majority owner Hiroshi Yamauchi has raised a lot of questions about the future ownership of the team. And just as many questions about the man himself.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel gives us a history lesson on how Yamauchi saved professional baseball in Seattle but in recent years caused anger and mistrust among fans.

Elaine Thompson / AP File Photo

CenturyLink Field will be packed and louder than ever on Sunday evening. The Seahawks host the San Francisco 49ers in a much-anticipated match-up. 

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says this game may very well be a preview of the NFC championship battle this season.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The Seahawks play the Panthers in Charlotte, N.C., Sunday morning to kick off their much-anticipated 2013 season.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the season might not start off with a bang, but could end with one.  

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The new and improved Husky Stadium opens Saturday night as the University of Washington hosts Boise State to kick off the 2013 football season. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel got a sneak preview of the renovated facility and was quite impressed.  

Rich Pedroncelli / AP

A lot of questions remain following the revelation that Seattle arena investor Chris Hansen gave $100,000 to the anti-arena campaign in Sacramento, well after losing the battle to relocate the city's NBA team to Seattle.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel wonders if Seattle arena stakeholders are wondering whether Hansen can be trusted.  

Forbes Magazine recently named Seattle as the "Most Miserable Sports City in America." As KPLU's Kevin Kniestedt prepares to leave Seattle and move across the country, he asked Sports Commentator Art Thiel if it really is that bad of a sports town, and what he might be missing after he leaves.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Seattle Sounders took a big step toward establishing themselves as a world-class team with this week's acquisition of Clint Dempsey, the captain of the U.S. Men's National Team.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says this is a big deal.  

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

He cost the Seahawks a lot in trade treasure. Now, an injury could cost wide receiver Percy Harvin the season. He had hip surgery this week and is expected to be out for much – if not all – of the season.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel explains why this is a blow but not a death knell for the team. And he discusses reports there might have been warning signs about Harvin's injury.  

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Mariners are going to be without skipper Eric Wedge for at least the next 10 days. He's out of the hospital but not back with the team following a minor stroke this week.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Seattle Sounders host the Colorado Rapids Saturday to begin the second half of the season. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the team is far from full-strength.   

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Mariners head into next week’s All-Star break out of the pennant race once again. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says the team's poor performance has created a trust issue with fans.  

Matt York / AP Photo

The two most promising chances for the NBA and NHL to come to Seattle this year are now gone. This week the city council in the Phoenix suburb of Glendale voted to approve a lease agreement that keeps the NHL's Coyotes in Arizona.

The news comes two months after the NBA rejected a bid to relocate the Sacramento Kings to Seattle.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says it's a blow to Seattle's arena project, but not a very big one.  

Don Ryan, File / AP Photo

It should’ve been tougher. That’s what KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says about the punishment that the NCAA has issued to the Oregon Ducks football program for recruiting violations.

Matt York / AP Photo

Do sports fans in Seattle dare to get excited about the prospect of yet another professional team coming to town?

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel is skeptical about the possibility of the Phoenix Coyotes moving to Seattle.


Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The Mariners are hosting the Yankees at Safeco Field this weekend. But a lot of fans are still shaking their heads about Wednesday's history-making game —and devastating loss— against the White Sox.

KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel was there. To the bitter end. In the 16th inning. 

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