Crushed Optimists

We are twin brothers who grew up in Central Washington. This blog is devoted to the life of Seattle sports fans, as well as various other topics that we will espouse for your enjoyment. We could be called another OFFICIAL SEATTLE SEAHAWKS site, but we'll take our uneducated crack at the Mariners, Sonics, and Huskies as well. A Seattle Sports Blog? Must be the land... of crushed optimism!

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Can We Just Get This Over With?

It might be sunny outside in Seattle (although I wouldn't really know, since I'm safely ensconced in San Jose), but the mood of Seattle sports fans has to be dark. I'm a little disappointed I'm not around to listen to KJR 950 the past couple of days, but I bet they ran out of new ideas within the first fifteen minutes. There simply isn't anything to be optimistic about.

What are we supposed to think when the team is bought by a team full of Oklahoma City businessmen, who are led by a personality who has already made several public claims previous to this purchase about bringing a pro sports francise to his home town? Does anyone truly believe either his words or Howard Schultz that they are "committed" to keeping the team in the Pacific Northwest? If an ownership team full of Seattle businessmen can't make it happen, exactly what is supposed to change now?

It's depressing because there is just so much blame to go around. There isn't a single player who can legitimately claim they have made a good faith effort to keep the Sonics around.

The city is unwilling to admit that Seattle Center and Key Arena are decrepit pieces of junk, and that millions of dollars are needed to make any of it worthwhile (although Nick "Business Major" Licata does appear to make some quotes to that effect in the Seattle PI), and unwilling to admit any liability/culpability in making that happen.

The vocal taxpayers in Seattle might be some of the most misguided idiots ever. We can't do a monorail. We can't replace the Viaduct. We can't replace the 520 bridge. We can't put together funding for a stadium. Man. We suck.

The ownership team, who just cashed in a cool 150 million dollar profit, was unwilling to raise that money through investing in a new arena, lied to us about Key Arena being "state of the art" when it was renovated 10 years ago, and lied to us about the lease agreement being acceptable when they bought the damn team.

Where are the voices of reason? Art Theil, for one, whose biting article as usual mirrors my own thoughts. Art, you're right, it does feel like the ownership groups think we're all morons. The absurd festivities surrounding this transition feel like some horrible joke. Even Steve Kelley has some good lines, my personal favorite being, "Five years ago, the Lord of Lattes pledged an NBA championship for the city of Seattle. Five years later, he gave it the shaft instead." This was not an ownership group we'll miss.

What about Oklahoma City? They have proven they can support a team, at least in the short term, and as I wrote yesterday, smaller cities do have a track record (San Antonio, Sacramento) of handling NBA franchises. Local fans also seem to have no problem supporting OU and OSU athletics, so I think there is a long term base. Seattle fans would do better than criticizing Oklahoma City... the economic travails of the NBA aren't their fault.

At the end of the day, anger turns to sadness. Kevin Jackson, who can always be counted on to write sad articles about Seattle for ESPN, sums up the feelings of loss. Now, I can't conjure up as many good feelings, but I will say that for a few years in the 90's, there wasn't a better ticket in this town. Now? I almost wish it would happen tomorrow, instead of this long drawn out divorce. Why would anyone put down season ticket money for a false 40 year anniversary celebration? Why would anyone want to be associated with a team just looking for an opportunity to bolt? This will be one of the oddest sports seasons I'll have ever been around, a fan base torn between being, well, fans, and anger/depression/apathy.

Congratulations, Howard Schultz. You sold out your home city.
Congratulations, Greg Nickels. You sold out your home city.

Go Seahawks.

posted by Gavin @ 2:40 PM  0 comments

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