Could the Atlanta Hawks become the second franchise that goes by the name Seattle Hawks?
According to Bill Simmons, offers are being made by multiple parties with interest in relocating the team to Seattle.
Along with Chris Hansen, who has been working tirelessly to bring the Association back to the Emerald City for years, is Thomas Tull.
Tull is a film producer, the CEO of Legendary Pictures. I have looked up some background on the guy, but can’t find any connections to Seattle.
It would presumably send arena plans back to square one if Tull were to win the bidding war, as Hansen would be unlikely to relent easily after putting so much into this effort already. Which is another factor.
The NBA owes Chris Hansen big time. His bidding war with Vivek Ranadive doubled the value of the Sacramento Kings and his partner who he recruited to be a part-owner with him ended up buying the Los Angeles Clippers for an absurd $2 billion. It would be a massive slap-in-the-face for them to allow the next franchise in Seattle to be sold to anyone else.
Not to mention, Tull would either have to buy the arena grounds and plans from Hansen or start this whole freakin’ process from scratch.
It seems very unlikely to me that the next ownership group of the Seattle Supersonics wouldn’t be lead by Chris Hansen.
Unfortunately, it also seems like a longshot for either of them to successfully relocate the team in general.
Seattle has many advantages, but Atlanta has even more.
Aside from being in a slightly larger economic and media market, Atlanta is home to the headquarters of Turner Broadcasting. The NBA and Turner recently agreed to an extension that will keep them together through the 2024-25 season. NBA games are broadcasted on the Turner network, not to mention Turner jointly manages NBA TV, NBA.com and other NBA owned media outlets.
The NBA would have one very unhappy business partner if they allowed the Hawks to leave the ATL.
But regardless, any news is good news for Sonics fans. Keep the hope! S.O.S.