The beginning of the 2009-2010 NBA season marks the beginning of Year Two without the Seattle Sonics.
I find myself more bitter and frustrated than I was a year ago. The avid basketball fan inside of me can't help but tune in, game after game. I love it. Can't get enough of it actually, and I hate it all at the same time.
I cringe whenever I see an Oklahoma City highlight. I have no issues with the people of OKC, just the situation, the disrespect, and the lies that all led to my team being whisked away.
I think what could've been. It was evident early in Durant's rookie campaign that he would be something special. A face of the franchise. A Gary Payton or Shawn Kemp type of figure in Seattle. We could build around him.
Who could we lure in during the free agency class of 2010? Maybe Chris Bosh...finally get that low post threat that we have wasted draft pick after draft pick on for years, and haven't had since Kemp's departure in '97.
That's all for naught. I can no longer say "we" when talking about an NBA franchise. Can no longer criticize or praise "my" team. I can no longer get into long drawn out debates with my dad and uncle about personnel decisions.
Even reminiscing about the years we spent together, father and son, at the Key is just a sad reminder of a bond we had with "our" team that no longer exists.
We still have the Seahawks. We got the M's. Griffey coming back this year was key to uplifting a city whose sports scene was grim. The Sounders are here and making noise. UW's basketball team has high expectations this year. But something's missing.
It's winter in Seattle. It's cold. It's windy. The rain is a constant. Winter in Seattle used to mean more than just umbrellas and raincoats.
For 41 nights a year for the past four decades we all had a place to go, a team to see. An experience that for three hours would transform those cold winter months into electricity and excitement.
But instead, it's winter in Seattle. It's cold. It's windy. The rain is a constant, and "my" team is nowhere to be found.