Okay, the meeting is over and both Sue Bird and Jim Moore are on the floor completing their final warmups. We have three beat writers and a handful of Storm staffers in attendance.
Sue’s first comment on arriving on the floor: “Is that sweat?” Yes, it is. Jim’s worked up a pretty good-sized sweat while preparing. Later, Sue asks if I’m live-blogging. As a long-time reader, Sue knows all too well I am.
“Do you think she’s intimidated by all the shots I’m making,” Jim asks. No, it doesn’t appear so, but Jim is having some success from outside, especially from the corners.
We’re underway and Jim misses his first shot. Sue knocks down a set shot from the elbow and Jim matches. Sue to the other elbow. Jim misses – after talking some trash.
Sue’s mostly shooting gimmes to try to retain control. Jim misses a six-foot banker.
… then another shot from the elbow.
“Can you do something that’s not nickel and dime,” asks Jim? “You’ve got H-O-R nickel-dime,” retorts Sue, but she does eventually relent and retreat beyond the three-point line.
“You know what they called me in high school?” asks Jim. “All money.”
That would sound so much better if he hadn’t badly missed from the corner immediately afterwards. He was correct – the shots he was making in warmup aren’t going down now.
Jim misses a three-pointer from the left wing.
Sue makes and Jim misses a three at the top of the key and his chances are on life support, but he hits the next attempt to “prove it” and stays alive.
“Any guy who shoots long range, their mid-range is wack,” observes Sue, but Jim hits an 18-footer to disprove him.
“I can make these in my sleep,” says Jim of a banker from the left wing (the Tim Duncan shot), and he rattles it home.
Sue hits a left-wing three and Jim misses. Could this be it? Way long for an airball and that’s it.
E and game over.
“He Couged it,” hollers a UW alum in the rooting section (not me).
“I was worried,” admits Sue. “You had me nervous.”
When it counted, however, Sue never ever got a letter.
Jim’s a good sport about the defeat – mostly – but does say he honestly thought he was going to win. Instead, he’ll be donating $200 to the Sonics & Storm Foundation (naturally, Sue’s choice for charity) and attending a game with his kids.
UPDATE: Here’s Jim’s take on the contest from Wednesday’s P-I.
“Bird was not only better but smarter,” he wrote. “She knows that guys who like to throw up threes have a tendency to short-arm shots from close range. An assortment of 10- to 15-footers put me in an H-O-R hole in a hurry.
“I can’t remember how she got S on me, but E was a killer, coming from the left wing, a 20-footer that I usually make in my sleep; the problem being, I was awake, missed it twice and that was that.”