One item never in short supply during this arena saga has been rhetoric. Whether from the league, the new owners, the local media, or your friendly neighborhood blogger, so many venomous words have been spewed you’d have thought Donald Trump owned the Sonics and Rosie O’Donnell was the mayor of Seattle.
Admittedly, and regrettably, yours truly has done his fair share of this. To be honest, this is an emotional issue for all of us, and emotional issues tend to produce venom from even the friendliest snakes.
But one particular aspect I’ve heard repeatedly is the one from local fans works along these lines, “If the Sonics leave, I’m done with the NBA.”
That’s a jarring statement to make, considering how important following basketball is to Sonic fans. Yes, we’re Sonic fans, but we’re also basketball fans. It’s not as though as soon as the regular season ended we gave up on watching hoops. With the staggering Western Conference matchups in the first round this season, you can’t help but watch, right?
Is this really an honest assessment, that you’d go cold turkey on the NBA if the Sonics headed off to Oklahoma City?
Having lived in three states and one province in the past 15 years, I think I have a different perspective than someone who has spent his entire life in the Northwest. While I love the Sonics, I’ve moved around enough to have spent times in my life where I couldn’t easily access information on the team. During those periods, I’ve learned to broaden my horizons a bit, and pick up information on whatever the local media was providing (except hockey; a man has to have his principles). I’m not going to say I’m better than someone who has never moved away, but it’s just a fact of life that it’s not as easy to follow the Sonics in Los Angeles or Vancouver as it is in Seattle.
So, rabid Sonic fan reading this site today: How angry are you? Are you truly willing to cast off the league that gave your memory Kareem’s skyhook, the Iceman’s finger rolls, and Dominique’s 360s? Can you really say that if the Sonics were already gone that you’d pass up the chance to watch Phoenix and San Antonio battle this spring?
Enlighten us, Sonic fans. How angry are you?