Sometimes, strange times bring enemies closer. Sometimes, people make comments they never dreamed they would make. Sometimes, in the midst of lies, they tell the truth.
One of those times was this week, when the Sonics put – in writing, mind you – the same argument anti-stadium activists have been making for the past two decades; the argument that the economic benefits derived from professional sports teams is a great, big pile of nothing, that every dollar spent on a team is a dollar which would have been spent elsewhere.
Did I mention that it was the Sonics who made this argument? Here, if you don’t believe me, read this:
“Entertainment dollars not spent on the Sonics will be spent on Seattle's many other sports and entertainment options. Seattleites will not reduce their entertainment budget simply because the Sonics leave.”
That quote is taken (via Jim Brunner’s article in the Seattle Times) from the Sonics’ legal papers filed in US District Court this week. And, yes, the papers were delivered to the court with flying pigs which had to dodge the snowballs emanating from Hell.
Obviously, the quote is rhetoric, especially considering the Sonics argued the exact opposite in all their previous utterances. It is rhetoric designed to convince the courts the Sonics are not an integral part of the city’s fabric, and that the judge presiding in the case will allow the team to flee to Oklahoma City.
You know Okalahoma, the city being asked to spend $100 million on refurbishing their new stadium so that they might enjoy the economics benefits of a pro basketball team?
For Clay Bennett’s sake, I hope the internet’s down in OKC.