The Dawgfather still has it.
More than two decades after his retirement as Washington football coach, Don James is revered by Seattle sports fans. In case you think some hot new athletes or coaches have replaced James in Seattle sports consciousness, think again. Our poll of the best nicknames in the history of Seattle sports went to The Dawgfather.
True, it was fairly close. James earned about 20 percent of the vote, getting 1,350 of more than 6,900 votes through 12:30 p.m. Wednesday. Runner-up Shawn “The Reign Man” Kemp, the former Sonic, earned about 15 percent of the vote, but lost by more than 300 votes in our informal (and very unscientific) reader poll.
Still, it shows not only that James has a great nickname, but how well-regarded and well-known he is to this day. No matter that he’s retired, in his 80s and largely out of the public eye.
Randy “The Big Unit” Johnson, the former Mariners pitcher, was third with about 14 percent of the vote; Gary “The Glove” Payton was fourth with 12 percent and “Downtown” Fred Brown, another former Sonic, complete the top five with 11 percent.
Marshawn “Beast Mode” Lynch, a Seahawks running back and the only active player or coach on our list, was sixth with 10 percent. Completing our top 10 were: Ken “The Kid” Griffey, Sam “Big Smooth” Perkins, Jack “The Throwin’ Samoan” Thompson and Brian “The Boz” Bosworth.
I have three questions: 1) What is it about former Sonics players and great nicknames? 2) Why aren’t more current players on this list? Beast Mode was it. 3) Who didn’t make our top 10 but should have?
The polls are still open, if you want to weigh in with your pick.
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