The other day I was looking for news on the Seattle SuperSonics, hoping that there might be an update on a team coming back to the Emerald City. Sadly, the NBA news these days is focused on free agents like LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Carmelo Anthony.
Where is our expansion news? Or relocation news? When will we get to read a story about Steve Ballmer having a change of heart and renewing his goal to bring basketball back to Seattle?
Now, I did find one site that had a bevy of Seattle SuperSonics merchandise. It is run by the NBA, and it seems that the Association will still sell you a variety of Sonics gear. Many of the items are labeled “vintage.” You can draw your own conclusions on whether that is an appropriate way to categorize a Gary Payton or Shawn Kemp shirt.
So, the NBA won’t put a team in Seattle, and David Stern seemed determined as part of his legacy to keep basketball out of the state of Washington. And yet, the league is happy to cash in on merchandise.
A little hypocrisy?
Obviously we understand. This isn’t personal, it’s just business. Of course, that is still one of the more one-sided, insensitive phrases that you can utter. It’s personal to someone, just typically not the person saying it.
This is not to suggest that the NBA should declare a moratorium on selling merchandise from hibernating franchises. It isn’t worth suggesting, because the NBA does not seem to care about the faithful fans in Seattle.
Perhaps the NBA should take the proceeds from this particular category of merchandise, and put it in a special fund. How about the “Bring Back the Sonics” fund? If and when a franchise becomes available, the interested owner (Chris Hansen, or someone else) could use that cash towards acquiring the new Sonics.
Before you buy that “vintage” shirt or hat, send a note to the NBA and ask that the proceeds go towards the return of the SuperSonics. Let me know what they say.