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    NBA: Teamless in Seattle and the "Atlantic"

    Here is and article, surprisingly in The Atlantic,[ about the response to the femail majority Seattle City Council's rejection of a deal that could have moved a Sonic return and arena in motion.

    What's your opinion of the Atlanic writer's perspective?




    When Female Politicians Try to Stand Up to Sports Fans
    Seattle’s majority-woman city council blocked construction on a sports stadium. Things got ugly.



    ERICA C. BARNETT MAY 21, 2016 POLITICS
    When women in power take on a city’s beloved sports institution, shocking things can happen. Earlier this month, the five women who make up the first female majority on Seattle’s nine-member city council in nearly two decades voted against a street-use ordinance that would have helped bring a new basketball arena to the city. The women immediately faced a wave of misogynistic attacks, violent threats, and charges of gender-based incompetence.*

    Some writers simply called the women names: “I fucking hate those BITCHES ,THERE NOT GONNA BE IN OFFICE IN 2 YEARS AND THEY SAY NO .. THEY CAN BURN IN HELL,” said one letter. Others said the council members lacked the intelligence to understand how important sports are to the city: “This is why women get paid less than men at this level.Irrational/emotional thinking takes president [sic] over reason in important decision making.” And one writer, a local attorney, signed his name to an email to all five women that read, in part: “As women, I understand that you spend a lot of your time trying to please others (mostly on your knees) but I can only hope that you each find ways to quickly and painfully end yourselves. Each of you should rot in hell for what you took from me yesterday.” (After a local activist filed a complaint with the state bar association, the attorney, Jason Feldman, issued a written apology. He didn’t respond to a request for comment.)

    Perhaps only sports could bring this kind of ugly misogyny into the public conversation. Since Seattle lost the Sonics to Oklahoma in 2008, fans—mostly male—have rallied under names like Sonics Rising to bring the NBA back to the city. But women have always struggled to gain power in politics in this otherwise liberal city. Only one woman, Bertha Knight Landes, has ever served as mayor, and that was for a single two-year term in the early 1900s.**


    For example: Twelve years ago, in a scandal known locally as “Strippergate,” three council members, one male and two female, were caught taking illegally bundled campaign contributions from a strip-club magnate seeking to expand his parking lot. The two women were summarily booted from office in elections after ugly campaigns called their integrity into question. Groups like the National Women’s Political Caucus frequently wring their hands about the lack of women lining up to run for local office, and gender was a punch line at candidate forums last year, when a council candidate named John Roderick joked there were more candidates named Jonathan (three) than women (one) running for the two citywide council seats.

    Bagshaw says this is the first time she’d felt remotely afraid walking home without a police escort.
    In interviews, most of the five council members who voted against this month’s street-use change—which would have handed control of a public alley over to a San Francisco developer who has vowed to “bring the Sonics back” to Seattle—say they weren’t prepared for the hundreds of emails, tweets, Facebook posts, and voice messages they received from angry sports fans, almost all of them male.

    Sally Bagshaw, a soft-spoken, 65-year-old council veteran who voted in 2012 for an agreement to use public bonds to finance a future arena but opposed the street-use change last week, has been hit particularly hard by the misogyny firehose. After Bagshaw cast an initial committee vote against the change in April, two local FM radio shock jocks, known on-air as “Ron and Don,” started giving out Bagshaw’s number on the air and relentlessly urging listeners to call her office. They complied, leaving messages Bagshaw summarizes as: “You [at][at][at][at]. You whore. You bitch. You don’t know anything. You’re just having an emotional response. That’s why we need to have guys making these decisions.” For now, she says, her office no longer takes calls during drive time.

    “I cannot imagine anyone saying to a woman the kinds of things that they said to us. Do they say those to their sisters? To their mothers? To their wives?,” Bagshaw says. “I just got to a point last week where I’m going, ‘Holy shit, how did we get to this point in our community?’” A downtown Seattle resident for the past 16 years, Bagshaw says this is the first time she’d felt remotely afraid walking home without a police escort. “I thought, ‘What if a bunch of gooner drunks came out of one of the bars as I walked by and recognized me?’ And it made me mad because in all those years, I have never found myself in a position where I had to worry.”


    Lorena Gonzalez, a freshman council member who cast the final, decisive vote against the alley measure, said that as a woman of color and the city’s first Latina council member, she was taken aback by the sexist comments; she’s more accustomed to racism. The backlash was a wake-up call that even in liberal Seattle, women have a long way to go before they’re fully respected as public leaders, she said.

    “We have achieved a lot in the movement for women’s rights in our country, and certainly in our city, but that doesn’t mean that sexism is dead—it just means that it’s a sleeping dog, and when that sleeping dog is kicked, suddenly it bites you and you’re reminded that the dog has teeth,” Gonzalez says. “We cannot fool ourselves in this city, as progressive as it might be, into believing that sexism is a thing of the past because it is not.”

    Council freshman Lisa Herbold adds that the five women's decision to oppose the measure is an example of a hardball negotiation strategy that's rare in Seattle. “We showed that we are willing to vote ‘no' if the deal being offered didn't meet our policy objectives,” she said. “Some men aren't used to women acting as tough negotiators to get what they want. They expect us to be conciliatory.”

    “I just got to a point last week where I’m going, ‘Holy shit, how did we get to this point in our community?’”
    Two days after the vote, after pressure on social media about his failure to promptly condemn the attacks, Mayor Ed Murray read a statement condemning the sexist comments at an unrelated press conference in a neighborhood far away from city hall. Only one female council member, Herbold, was present, and she says the mayor didn’t bother telling her he planned to make a statement, much less ask her if she wanted to speak for herself. The next week, with no formal statement from Murray forthcoming, the five women signed an op-ed in The Seattle Times decrying the sexist backlash.

    Murray spokesman’s, Jason Kelly, said there was nothing unusual about his decision to speak up about the backlash at the end of a press conference without formal notice to the press. Murray “frequently speaks about other emerging issues, even if they are unrelated to the planned topic of the day,” Kelly said. “The mayor felt very strongly that as the elected leader of the city he needed to respond to the misogynistic comments about the councilmembers in the wake of the street vacation vote.”


    One week after the vote, a representative from Bring Back Our Sonics, one of the mostly male groups that lobbies the council for the arena, stood up in council chambers.*** He implored the female council members not to forgive the comments, but to forget about them. They were, after all, a mere distraction from the “real” issue: the arena. “I would find it unfair if those comments were to cloud your judgment on the rest of the Sonics fans, [who] are passionate, full of class, and respectful to the council members,” the speaker, Joseph Chong, said. (This sentiment, which could be summarized as #notallsonicsfans, has also shown up on social media, where hundreds of male fans have jumped in to decry misogyny—and urge the council’s women not to let their emotions get the best of them).

    After Chong spoke, another Sonics supporter, Josh Shea, stood at the microphone and for several minutes demanded that Gonzalez provide him with a detailed accounting of her “logic” in voting against the legislation. The off-topic speech violated council rules, but council president Bruce Harrell let it continue. Finally, after freshman council member Debora Juarez muttered, “This is bullshit” into a live mic, Bagshaw shut it down, calling it “inappropriate for this gentleman to focus on one of our colleagues. There are five of us who voted no for very logical reasons.” Not for the first time, the women had had to speak for themselves.

    The Aftermath of Seattle's Majority-Female City Council Majority Voting Down a Sports Stadium - The Atlantic

  2. #2
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    Fuck the NBA. It sucks. I dont want a team back I hope the league goes bankrupt.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bsnub View Post
    Fuck the NBA. It sucks. I dont want a team back I hope the league goes bankrupt.
    I have not followed closely since the Sonics left town.

    It's a fast game. Too fast for me at times.

    If Seattle gets a team I'll follow them, but it's going to be a while.

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    10 years ago, the Sonics were sold. 2 years later they moved.

    I want to follow the NBA when the season starts in 3 months. As a Sealtte-dude, I have no team. I've never really felt an affinity for the Portland Trailblazers, but Paul Allen (the owner of the Seahawks owns them) and long-time Sonic play caller Kevin Calabro will work for the Blazers next year. The Blazers are only 3 hours south of Seattle by car.

    I have 2 choices. Try to follow the Blazers, or pick a new time, most likely the Phoenix Suns.


    (I know Snubs won't be on board. )

    BASKETBALL 07/14/2016

    10 years ago, the SuperSonics left Seattle for OKC
    Adam Brown, left, producer of the documentary film "Sonicsgate: Requiem for a Team," and director Jason Reid, right, pose for a photo, Tuesday, July 12, 2016, in front of Reid's home in Seattle. July 18, 2016 will mark 10 years since the Seattle SuperSonics NBA team -- the city's first professional sports franchise -- was sold by Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz and the Basketball Club of Seattle to Clay Bennett and the Professional Basketball Club LLC based in Oklahoma City. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) ORG XMIT: WATW302

    Adam Brown, left, producer of the documentary film "Sonicsgate: Requiem for a Team," and director Jason Reid, right, pose for a photo, Tuesday, July 12, 2016, in front of Reid's home in Seattle. July 18, 2016 will mark 10 years since the Seattle SuperSonics NBA team -- the city's first professional sports franchise -- was sold by Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz and the Basketball Club of Seattle to Clay Bennett and the Professional Basketball Club LLC based in Oklahoma City. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) ORG XMIT: WATW302
    Associated Press
    By Tim Booth

    AP Sports Writer
    PROMOTED STORIES FROM SportsChatter


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    SEATTLE — The day had already tested Jeremy Repanich’s patience and resolve. And now he was being hounded by a security guard outside the Seattle SuperSonics’ practice facility because he was unable to produce the credential that proved he worked for the team.

    The only way Repanich — a guest relations coordinator — could get inside the gates on July 18, 2006, was to open the back of his car and show the security guard he was hauling the 1979 NBA and 2004 WNBA championship trophies to a news conference on the Sonics’ future.

    “I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, I can’t believe I forgot my credential, how am I going to get in? Oh wait a minute, I have the Larry O’Brien trophy in the trunk of my car,’” Repanich said.

    The day would get stranger and tougher from there.

    People in Seattle remember July 18, 2006, with bitterness because it was the day the city’s first professional sports franchise was sold by Howard Schultz and the Basketball Club of Seattle to Clay Bennett and the Professional Basketball Club LLC based in Oklahoma City. It was the beginning of a process that eventually led two years later to the SuperSonics relocating to Oklahoma City after 41 years in Seattle.

    This is the story of that 2006 day, as told by some of those involved. Schultz, the CEO of Starbucks and Sonics majority owner at the time of the sale, and Bennett both declined to be interviewed.

    ———

    Schultz purchased the SuperSonics and Seattle Storm in 2001 and inherited a difficult lease agreement with the city. With the changing economic structure of the NBA, the Sonics’ financial situation at KeyArena was a problem from the start.

    After failing to get money from local and state officials for arena upgrades, Schultz decided in early 2006 to explore selling.

    Sonics president and minority owner Wally Walker: “The issue was the arena. That was the unstable part because there was a lease that was expiring in 2010.”

    Walker arrived in France on July 11 for a family vacation. The ownership group was in discussions with Ed Evans, the head of a wireless firm out of Oklahoma City who indicated he wanted to keep the team in Seattle. Less than 24 hours after arriving in Europe, Walker found out an offer was made and Bennett was now at the forefront of the Oklahoma City group.

    Walker: “Our whole ownership group, and some of the management team, had gotten to know Ed over a period of multiple months, but still, we weren’t anywhere close to a deal. Then, we have a conference call, and now Mr. Bennett’s part of the Oklahoma City group.”

    The nine-member executive board of the Basketball Club of Seattle voted 5-4 to sell.

    “I flew back from France on that Sunday, I think it was the 16th, and got together with our management group. We went to a restaurant … and basically said, ‘Here’s what’s going on.’ I was still in a state of shock.”

    ———

    Kevin Calabro, Sonics play-by-play announcer: “We were heading to a tee time … when I got a phone call and it was from Wally Walker. And Wally said ‘We’ve sold the team.’ I said, ‘To who?’ And he said to Clay Bennett and Oklahoma City. And I knew immediately who Clay Bennett in Oklahoma City was because they had hosted the Hornets during Katrina for a couple of seasons.”

    Mike Gastineau, Seattle radio host: “I had just had a meeting at Pearl Jam’s warehouse about something, and I got this call from Calabro and he told me and it was announced maybe 10 minutes later or something. And I remember Kevin not being overly optimistic but being ‘Hey, who knows what is going to happen?’ I remember hanging up with him and I thought ‘They’re gone.’”

    Repanich: “I was someone who was also manning the phones a lot back then, because we had to talk to season ticket-holders and stuff like that. (One of our communications heads) was like ‘This is going to be a really horrible day. I can’t tell you anymore.’ But he was getting me ready, mentally ready to be on the phones all day.”

    Walker: “This was a brutal day. Of course, besides the fact that the announcement was made, we, and specifically I had a bunch of people to get in touch with, a bunch of, you know, Sonic faithful people that are affiliated with the organization. So I’ve got this whole list of people that I called, and also there were politicians. I had forgotten this, but here’s a note, I called the Governor.”

    ———

    The sale was formally announced at an afternoon news conference. While there were questions about Bennett’s future intentions, the lasting memory was the odd celebratory nature — complete with green and gold balloons — of a day that felt so gloomy.

    Jason Reid, director of the documentary ‘Sonicsgate’: “Watching the press conference live and hearing the words that were coming out of Clay Bennett’s mouth and Howard Schultz’s mouth and being so angry because it seemed so disingenuous to say they were selling to a group of out of town investors and that it was going to preserve the history of this great organization.”

    Walker: “That was a bad. It just had a bad vibe to it. Again, I’m up on a dais, and I’m totally uncomfortable with being there. I wrote my own little thing, my goal was to positively reinforce the things they said that was right about Seattle. … While I respected the people that I was up there with at that time, I didn’t want to be there. And, of course, the balloons.”

    ———

    Nearly two years to the day that the sale was announced, after failed arena proposals, lawsuits and a federal court case that never reached its conclusion, the Sonics and the city reached a settlement that allowed the franchise to move.

    The time since has been filled with starts and stops in the attempt to get the NBA back to Seattle.

    Sonics assistant coach Jack Sikma: “Ten years is a long time. I guess I overrated the importance of Seattle to the NBA.”

    Hall of Fame coach Lenny Wilkens: “I miss the opportunity to be at the game, to see the players here, living here, being part of this community.”

    10 years ago, the SuperSonics left Seattle for OKC | Chicago Sun-Times

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    NBA is mainly black- NW is mainly white. Why don't you get a NASCAR stadium there instead?

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    Quote Originally Posted by sabang View Post
    NBA is mainly black- NW is mainly white. Why don't you get a NASCAR stadium there instead?
    I assume you're joking. (Do tell.)

    A NASCAR race track and stadium was proposed in Western Washington that was big enough to hold 100,000 people, but do to the usual disagreement, lawsuits, wrangling, it died. This was about 12-16 years ago (I've forgotten exactly when).

    If NASCAR wanted to build a track and I suppose they thought there was enough demand and I assume they did their studies.

    As for the Sonics, they have always been popular in Seattle (I cannot give numbers) but they have always been popular (with the-then fair weather fans of the area).

    I do assume that football is more popular. Not sure about Baseball.

    The reason why the SuperSonics lost money was because Starbuck's CEO Howard Schultz inherited a bad lease deal when he bought the team. There was also a group of minority owners as is the norm.

    The Sonics (iirc) were losing $5 million per year and he asked the politicians for taxpayer money to fund most / part of the new arena and they said no. It went to a vote to the voters and the "no" vote won.

    The sonics were sold in 2016, and left a couple of years later.


    We still remain, teamless in Seattle.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cold Pizza
    The sonics were sold in 2016, and left a couple of years later.
    Typo? Who gives a shit on this forum whether the Sonics left or not. Especially 10 years ago. Vancouver lost the Grizzlies as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aging one View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Cold Pizza
    The sonics were sold in 2016, and left a couple of years later.
    Typo?
    Yes. Pardon me.

    Who gives a shit on this forum whether the Sonics left or not. Especially 10 years ago. Vancouver lost the Grizzlies as well.
    Snub cares.

    And also, I don't care about the Grizzlies, only the Sonics.


    Your Warriors lost!


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    Obviously, it won'd be an expansion team but getting another team from another city.

    It'll likely be a while.....


    NBA

    Inevitable? Yes, the NBA is inevitably disappointing for Seattle


    BY DANNY O'NEIL
    JULY 26, 2017 AT 3

    Recent comments from NBA commissioner Adam Silver made it clear why Seattle can't wait on the league to expand before proceeding on an arena. (AP)
    Never has inevitable felt so far away.

    But this is the NBA we’re talking about, so what did you expect?

    And anyone who was trying to spin Tuesday’s news as a positive sign when it comes to the NBA returning to Seattle is either painfully optimistic are unbelievably naive.

    Because while it might sound good to hear that NBA commissioner Adam Silver told Blazers player C.J. McCollum that expansion was inevitable and cited Seattle specifically as being on the short list for consideration, well, what he said before that was far more telling:

    Coming off of these Finals, you have some fans saying, ‘There’s only one good team in the league.’ And I’m thinking, ‘Well, if people really believe that even though we have 450 of the best players in the world, and 450 players can only form one really good team, probably doesn’t make sense to expand in terms of dilution of talent.’
    – Adam Silver

    It echoes what Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said in an email to me last year: “The economics don’t favor adding another franchise.” And let’s remember that Cuban was one of two owners to vote against the Sonics’ relocation, with Paul Allen being the other.


    The NBA just finished the first year of a nine-year national TV contract that will pay a total of $24 billion, so we’re eight years away from the door even being cracked for a new team to enter.

    In other words, Seattle can’t wait on the NBA before arranging for a new arena, which is actually one of the more attractive elements of the Oak View Group’s proposed project at Seattle Center. That project can begin without a formal acquisition of a team to serve as an anchor tenant. Not only that, but all indications are that the NHL would be more likely to land in Seattle before an NBA team.

    While Chris Hansen’s proposed SoDo arena is no longer beholden to acquiring an NBA team specifically first, the descriptions of the request to buy a chunk of Occidental Avenue from the city outline that the street would not be vacated until an NBA or NHL team is acquired.

    If someone builds it, the NBA very well may come. Eventually.

    Or as Silver would say, inevitably.

    'Inevitable' NBA expansion can't come soon enough for Seattle

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    So what the heck else is there to do in Oklahoma City...visit the OKC Memorial Museum on the grounds of Timothy McVeigh's 1995 massive bomb carnage of the Murrah Federal Bldg ?

    I'm glad OKC got a professional team for their city to rally around.

    Seattle's got NFL and college football, MLB and soccah.

    Between Bezos , Gates, Shultz and Allen - if they really wanted a B-ball team in Seattle they've got the financial wherewithall to build another stadium / coliseum and purchase a team for Seattle without the taxpayer.

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