Fear & Loathing in Seattle: Jamal Crawford’s Pro-Am Helps a City Heal

When you walk into the Royal Brougham Pavilion at Seattle Pacific University in Queen Anne, it doesn’t feel like a college arena. It feels more like a high school gymnasium, and there’s an immediate air of intimacy here that’s rare given the fact that the upcoming game features so many professional basketball players.

It’s a little before 4 p.m., and Dime arrived in Seattle this Saturday in late July just in time for the final game of Week 4 of the Seattle Pro-Am, a match-up featuring Jamal Crawford and his DRG Wolverines versus Alvin Snow and the Stranger Cougars.

[RELATED: Dime Q & A with Jamal Crawford on the Seattle Pro-Am and more]

It’s hard to put your finger on exactly what it is, but really good basketball players, when they’re warming up, have a certain combination of tranquility and insouciance to their movement that belies a very high level of athleticism and overall ability.

After tip-off, it quickly becomes evident that this is a real basketball game. The pace and intensity is roughly 80-90 percent of what you would expect from a college or pro game, which is pretty amazing considering Crawford regularly (and effortlessly) drops 50 or more points here every weekend. He’s just that much better than everybody else.

Here are just a few random mind-boggling facts about Jamal Crawford: he is one of only three current players with more than three 50-point games. He’s the only player in NBA history to win the Sixth Man of the Year award twice. He is seventh among all active players in career three-pointers (1,689). And he is the all-time NBA leader in four-point plays.

But this game would be a different story. After a hot start and a second-half streak of three impossibly-deep three-pointers in a row, Crawford had gone cold, and by the end of the third quarter, his Wolverines were getting blown out of the gym thanks to a 22-2 run by the Cougars.

We were witnessing something rare. Crawford – who is quite possibly the nicest guy you will ever meet – was visibly frustrated and engaging in a little trash talk with the opposing team’s bench, which, though perfectly harmless, seemed a tiny bit out of character for him. This was partially due to the fact that Alvin Snow – a local Franklin High product who played at Eastern Washington University and professionally overseas for the past decade – had caught fire. During one sequence, Snow drained several deep three-pointers of his own and, to make matters worse, picked Crawford’s pocket on one possession and it followed it up with yet another impossibly deep three on the other end. It was an off game for Crawford (if you can call it that) who finished with only 38 points in the loss.