I guess I gotta face the fact that it's over. It really did not hit me until I heard Clay Bennett speak at his press conference. I don't know what to be most disappointed about, but it probably is that we will never see Kevin Durant reach his full potential.
Don't think I have forgotten you Gary Payton. I don't care how big-headed you are—you deserve it just as much as you deserve to get your jersey raised in the rafters in Seattle. As I reflect on what it will be like dealing with this void in the winter, I have a few people I would like to thank.
Thank you, Howard Schultz, for screwing the people of Seattle and getting us in this mess in the first place. I'll never understand what went through your head when you signed the paper handing over the team to out-of-town buyers clearly wanting a team of their own. Drink Tully's.
Thank you, Christine Gregoire and the legislature of Washington, for screwing the people of Seattle by not even seriously considering a legitimate Key Arena renovation funding plan. It could have been done in the time frame that you had left. Even if it wasn't, do you not have it within yourselves to dedicate one or two days to a matter that affects hundreds of thousands of people?
Thank you to the coward owners of the NBA (excluding Cuban), who voted for the relocation of the Sonics. By letting this pass, you are reinforcing that the NBA model is broken and will continue to be broken until somebody fixes it.
What kind of league can this be where a group of rich guys from some wannabe major city buy a team with a 40-year history and an amazing fan base without raising any eyebrows from officials, hijack them, and bring them back to their own city without a scratch?
Funny thing is, if this can happen to Seattle, it can just about happen to any other NBA city. For not standing up against it by voting for the move, chances are it will happen to you along the road.
Thank you, Clay Bennett, for too many reasons to list. You may be a hero to the people of OK City, but anybody following this whole saga knows you are a person of weak character. Time after time you amazed us with your flat-out lies.
The final nail in the coffin was when you tried to play yourself off as a man possessed for getting an arena in Seattle. You may have been able to fool your boyfriend Stern, but the rest of society isn't that ignorant.
Congratulations on crying today—it must have been tough for you to fight so hard to keep the team in Seattle. No matter how hard you tried, the citizens of this town fought as hard as they could to reject your logical plans of creating a $500 million dollar arena in Renton, and you couldn't crunch the numbers to make staying true to the lease profitable.
Hmm...maybe you shouldn't have bought the team in the first place if you were able to see that coming.
And I think I speak for at least a few others when I say that now I am forced to hate OKC—and you know what, I don't want to. I'm sure that lots of people wanted a NBA franchise but didn't want to get it by stealing it right from the hands of others. It's probably a good town (definitely no Seattle), but now I view it as a one with a lack of class.
I hope you enjoy your replicated banners and championship trophy that you're bringing over to Oklahoma (oh yes, they say they're taking the history with them as well). I wasn't alive when they won it, but I can only imagine, being a Seattle sports fan who has won absolutely nothing, what it is like to win it all.
We witnessed season after season of nothing, but at least we could always go back to that one season, 1979, to prove that we aren't complete losers after all. But it's all good, because I have no doubt in my mind that the people of OKC will appreciate those banners just as much as we do!
Thank you, Seattle lawyers, for making all of the fans' efforts to keep the team in Seattle worthless. A couple months ago, Mitch Levy on KJR held a poll that asked if fans would accept a deal that offered $50 million, rights to the Sonics name and colors, and a legitimate effort to bring another team back. At least a couple thousand voted, and the response turned out to be 60 percent no.
Those thousands didn't go to that rally to see them quit like this. We wanted a fight to the bitter end, and we're left with having to face the fact that we won't see another Sonics game in years, if not forever.
And thank you especially, David Stern, who lost the respect of anyone who paid enough attention to see how much of a tool you are. Like Bennett, you never failed to stun me with your nonstop lies.
Days after the first batch of e-mails were revealed that hammered home the fact that the OKC group never had the intention of keeping the team, he went on Mike and Mike. They asked him what he thought of these e-mails, and he responded by saying that he hadn't even read them.
I'm sorry, but if you haven't gotten around to taking the 30 seconds necessary to read something that very much involves you and your league, are you even fit enough to run it? 10 years ago, you were on tape stating how the Key Arena was a world class venue.
Are you aware that you have established a system in which if a city doesn't hand over millions and millions of tax dollars every 10 years, that city doesn't deserve to own a team?
I am sorry, but you are way too big on yourself and your league that is constantly losing credibility and falling way behind football and baseball—which by the way should be doing much worse than the NBA.
It is only going to get worse as you keep feeding teams to black hole markets like Charlotte, Memphis, and now Oklahoma City, while turning your back on a market that constantly puts asses in the seats, even during a season in which they are losing their most games ever with an owner that is trying to lose the public's interest by building for a future that we will never see, as well as cutting off the team's access to the public.
Oklahoma City will never have the fanbase of history that Seattle has, and I'm sure no one will be surprised in 10 years when the novelty of having a team wears off, and the OK Sonics as a franchise begin to fail.
This may be the saddest sports day in Seattle history. What else compares to losing a team that the community has grown to love over 40 years?
Who knows, we might get a team in a few years, and down the road we will forget that this ever happened.
Right now, though, we live in uncertainty—and it sure as hell feels like they're gone forever.
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