I saw this video first in the SonicsCentral comments section, and then on the Seattle Weekly Buzzer Beater. You can go there now to view it.
Basically, it involves Mitch Levy and David Stern, with Stern opining about how wonderful the brand-new KeyArena is. Funny how 13 years can change things.
[Edit: Credit should go to "camhusky," who found the video. It's rare to be able to find something which illustrates your point so effectively, and rarer still to find a blowhard such as Stern being hoisted so completely on his own petard. As camhusky writes at the YouTube link, "I post this video to show fans in Oklahoma that what David Stern and Clay Bennett are saying now, about how wonderful the Ford Center will be with a remodel, in 10-12 years' time, they'll be coming after you. Just like in Seattle, that remodel will not be good enough anymore. You're going to have to go through it all over again. And if you say, "enough!", you will probably lose your team too." Good job, cam!]
Basically, the economic model is doomed. Every year bigger arenas are needed, every year more revenue is needed. Our incomes are stagnant. So there's a looming gap. Expect the NBA to go into subprime lending on season tickets soon to make up the difference.
Not that I'm rooting for an economic downturn, but a serious depression is one way some "scorched-earth" reality would be laid into Stern's proud head. And we wouldn't have to do a thing! (At that point I'm not sure we'd even notice.)
To make that video even better (not that it is lacking), it would be wonderful to make a montage of Stern marveling about other stadiums. Put them all together, set it to The Doors "People Are Strange", and you've got yourself the feel-good hit of the year!
Percy Allen just posted this on his Sonics blog regarding questions about what the relocation vote does and does not permit:
Basically, here's what happened. The Sonics requested approval for location for the 2008-09, '09-10 and 10-11 seasons f the team is unable to resolve the KeyArena lease litigation this summer. The NBA's counsel told the relocation committee that Article 7 of the NBA Constitution does not permit approval of a relocation application for seasons other than the season following the application (in this case the '08-09 season).
The Board approved the move for next season and if the Sonics renew its application for either of the '09-10 or '10-11 seasons, the Board should approve the renewed application unless there's a major change in the circumstances.
It is interesting to note that the New Orleans Hornets reminded the Board of the Article 7 provision before the owners vote on Friday. No other team made any submissions regarding the Sonics' application.
I know there's a lot of technical phrases in there, but I'm quoting documents given to owners at last week's Board of Governors meeting.
I guess that's good news for us. If we win the court case then the BOG vote means nothing, and Clay's lease with OKC presumably means nothing. That means we have two years to work with before Bennett can sign anything with OKC that has any teeth.
On another note, I humbly offer the opinion that David Stern should be considered Public Enemy No. 1 for Sonics fans. Bennett is a lowlife, yes, but he's also an idiot. A lightweight. His plan has been clumsily executed and covered up. If Stern weren't hell-bent on shanghaing the Supes from Seattle, Bennett would have long ago cracked like Sam Bowie's kneecap. Plus, he obviously has a skewed moral compass.
But Stern? He's no dope, although he will certainly play the part in order to cover up the iniquities of his regime. He also is self-aware enough to know right from wrong. He just disregards it in the service of his ego and the parasitic demands of his league's economy. This whole situation reminds me of that line from "The Godfather": "Tattaglia's a pimp. He could never have outfought Santino. But I didn't know until this day that it was Barzini all along."
Stern's response to the e-mail revelations clinched it for me: he is the mastermind, and Bennett is his patsy. If this were a James Bond movie, Stern would be the faceless supervillian while Bennett would be the flunky who fails at his mission and is eventually whacked by his own boss.
I suppose I could be wrong, but given that Stern basically runs the NBA like a banana republic, and seems ready to protect Bennett at all costs, it seems to me that Stern will only back down if serious legal pressure is brought upon him by the city, state, and hopefully our senators. I just wish our governor and senators had the will to take him on.
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