Getting Closer to NBA in Seattle

May 16, 2012 marked a new rung on the ladder towards getting the NBA back in Seattle. The dilemma that doomed the Sonics’ hopes of staying in Seattle back in 2008 was the idea that KeyArena was not a suitable arena for an NBA franchise, and unless a plan for a new arena was put in place, Satan Clay Bennett was going to move the team to Oklahoma City. Fast forward to today, where the Oklahoma City Thunder have a Conference Semifinal game against the Lake show tonight, and there is no NBA team in Seattle. But today, undeniable progress was made.

The San Francisco area hedge-fund owner, Chris Hansen, has led the charge since announcing earlier this year his intention to build an arena in Seattle’s SODO region for an NBA and NHL team contingent on government funding. Hansen might as well be at the staff meetings for when the Avengers meet up because the guy is an absolute stud. Today however, he came out to say that he and his group, the City of Seattle, and King County have come to a MoU. MoU is short for Memorandum of Understanding, and is also short for awesome news.

The MoU basically states the following

  • If a professional basketball and/or hockey team were to be purchased, the $490 million dollar proposed arena would be built
  • Public cost would decrease significantly if only an NBA team were acquired (previously both NBA and NHL franchises were required to start building)
  • $290 million of private funding to build the arena (remaining $200 million comes from the city/county investment)
  • The arena would hold 18,500 raving lunatic Sonics fans
  • The ownership group has full intentions of re-acquiring the name, colors, records, and history of the Seattle SuperSonics from the Oklahoma City Thunder

The fact that the last bullet is a necessity is a sad truth. The failure of the city to keep the Sonics four years ago has forced this much effort to be undertaken to get it all back. The reason that this picture exists:

This graphic makes sense because the Thunder averaged approximately zero wins a year from 1979-2008

But that is neither here nor there, as the current proposal is the best bet the city has to bring the NBA back to Seattle.

So what now? Continue reading

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