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Yes We are Appreciated

Let me begin this post by saying that I am maddenenly busy and over the next several months readers at Sonicscentral.com are going to have to be very understanding of time constraints for my work. There are only so many hours in the day and those that I can delegate to basketball are being spent on Save Our Sonics and Storm so I am having serious trouble getting real articles together. I have tried to hold my work at least close to journalistic standards but for the time being will have to settle for unedited and often chaotic blog entries. Thank you for your patience.

First off I'll confirm the ESPN2 broadcasts comments that there is progress being made on the arena issue. There cannot be a lot of firm comments made at this time but talks are ongoing and by every account I hear Clay Bennett is getting things moving in a hurry. I will try to get permission to provide more details than that tomorrow afternoon.

Secondly please keep the faith with SOS&S. We may seem quiet lately but a ton of work is being done behind the scenes and it is going to result in an absolutely great season from a fan perspective. We don't have all the details worked out but this season the players are going to be all over the community, the organization will be welcoming fans with open arms, and we'll be having a lot of chances to get together with our team and celebrate professional basketball. I'm getting excited about a series of fan rallies, player events, and flat out parties that will get people really, really into this team. Again more information will follow.

Last but certainly not least the title of this entry: YES WE ARE APPRECIATED!!!

Today several of the people behind SonicsCentral and SaveOurSonics were invited to the Furtado Center by Assistant General Manager Rich Cho. Rich was born and raised in Seattle and is a die-hard fan in addition to a member of the organization. He offered a tour of the facility as a thank you for the dedication many of these people have put in.

During our meeting with Rich we got a chance to see the entire Furtado Center, meet players Luke Ridnour and Nick Collison, general manager Rick Sund, and of course the always friendly Wally Walker. Each and every member of the organization took the time to shake our hands, introduce themselves, and each and every one said the words "thank you".

There were other highlights to the day. Just the fact that Nick and Luke were present at the facility, like always working hard shows why this organization loves those two players. Rich Cho and Rick Sund were extremely candid in discussing how trades develop and the inner workings of the league. They showed us their free agent status board and how they prepare for the draft in what basically amounted to a fantasy interview for real basketball geeks, and Nick Collison, ever the humble gentleman delivered us all Pizza when Rich's assistant had trouble carrying them up.

I have often criticized the organization for having a disconnect with fans during the offseason and somehow poor Rich Cho turned into a sounding board for my own personal pet peave. What was amazing was that during this conversation the 6 true fans who were present actually wound up having a very candid and heart to heart conversation with the brass of our NBA team. Rich listened, heard, and responded to our praise and our criticism with an interest that was really genuine.

I walked out of this lunch with a real sense of affirmation about our Seattle SuperSonics. I don't think a bigger compliment could have been paid to our group of fans than the gracious and thankful treatment we recieved today. Thanks to the entire Sonics organization.

Please don't forget that Shawn Kemp will be at the Sonics legends tour this Saturday. Shawn will always have a special place in my memories and I'd love to give him a big crowd. I'll be in attendance and would love to see you there. Details at www.supersonics.com