Today we are awaiting a ruling on the Sonics vs City of Seattle lawsuit in federal court. The trial has been a lot of mud slinging and finger pointing, but I think there is a decent chance for us (the City) to win. Winning this case means that the Sonics must remain in Seattle for the next two seasons. In that time period, it is entirely possible that the city/county/state will come up with some sort of arena deal that will keep the Sonics here for good. Also, the NBA board of governors will have to vote again next April to allow the Sonics to move to Oklahoma City. If we have an arena deal here, there is no way they will allow it. Seattle is a much bigger, much broader TV market than OKC, with a much bigger potential revenue pool.
So. Rooting against the Sonics today, so that I can root for the Sonics for years to come.
I went to the trial one day last week, in my Ray Allen jersey. I watched a billionaire lie through his teeth on the stand. He has decided that the truth is what he wants it to be, and is sticking to his story. It will be very disheartening if we lose this lawsuit based on lies that are obvious to everyone. However, there is another lawsuit pending in a few weeks. That one is Howard Schultz (former owner) vs the Sonics, contending that they did not live up to their end of the deal (specific section of the contract required the new owners to make a 12-month good faith best effort to keep the team in Seattle, which we have documented proof was not what occurred). He is suing to undo the sale of the team. It is tricky, since he also sold the Storm (who were later sold to local ownership), but another avenue towards keeping the team. I know it is totally a PR stunt by Schultz to show that it is not his fault the Sonics are leaving and that he did everything he could....but it just may work. I think he has a decent case.
Anyway, Seattle is a total soap opera right now. THere are emails from the OKC owners alluding to moving the team to OKC, where the main owner says he is "a man possessed' in reply to other owners asking about how they are going to get the team moved to OKC.....he now has said in his sworn testimony that what he MEANT by being a man possessed was that he was a man possessed to find a way to keep the team in Seattle. Even though he was replying to a string of emails about moving the team to OKC. Total lie, but he keeps spouting it.
We also had a Sonics rally on the steps of the courthouse after the first day of the trial. I went, to be there, to do my part. They estimate 2-3 thousand people showed up. A good sized crowd, considering that they expected only a few hundred.
So. Wear some green and gold and send good thoughts my way. We will likely get a written verdict, which would mean we get it tomorrow, but it is possible to get one this afternoon.