Part and parcel with yesterday’s settlement is an assumption that no expansion teams are in the NBA’s foreseeable future.
Meaning, of course, any team bearing a Seattle Sonics’ jersey in the future will be doing so because another city’s NBA dreams have gone up in flames.
Leading yours truly to wonder: Is it worth it? After spending the past few days (well, months, really) bemoaning our fate and dispensing venom in every direction at the evil which is relocation, are we ready to be the league leaders in hypocrisy?
Color it however you like, but taking a team from another city makes us no better than the good people of Oklahoma City, and makes Steve Ballmer no better than Clay Bennett.
(Well, actually, Ballmer has yet to buy a team in another city, start the relocation process before the ink had dried on the contract, call himself a man possessed to not relocate, and then indulge in lascivious emails with the league commissioner. Perhaps he wouldn’t be as low as Bennett.).
As I was saying, do we want to prey upon the bones of another city’s misfortune? Personally, I’m leaning to the “No” side of that question, and it’s not that difficult to see why.
I’ve utilized the divorce analogy before for this situation; with Seattle as the mother, PBC as the father, and Sonic fans as the child. Well, to carry that metaphor to its logical conclusion, luring a team here from another city is the equivalent of your recently divorced mom wearing a halter top to your t-ball game, hoping her cleavage is enough to convince your friend’s dad to abandon his wife.
It’s all well and good for you to have a new dad, but what about your friend, who now has to hope that his mom is as good at flirting as your mom?
Okay, it’s a messy analogy and we’re beginning to paddle into some unseemly, oedipal waters at this point, but I think my point is clear: after enduring the past year and a half of turmoil and heartache, do we really want to be the ones causing that same pain to another group of people?
I’m sorry, but I wouldn’t want to be a party to that. And that is why, to my way of thinking, the only solutions to this whole sorry situation are either a victorious Howard Schultz lawsuit or an expansion team.
Any other answer is just too hypocritical for me to swallow.