Last week Art Thiel asked why no one seems upset that Rashard Lewis left Seattle for big money. He decided the lack of emotion was due to the low key nature of Lewis and hinted that Lewis was never that big of a deal here. He choked when it mattered (playoffs) and came up big when it didn't (50 points against the Clippers in Tokyo.)
I disagree. I think there was no public outcry this time (vs. when A-Rod jumped ship) because we all understood where Rashard was coming from and knew that we would have done the same thing. He watched the organization flounder without strong coaching after Nate took off. He watched a nearly endless parade of worthless seven footers get drafted and then not played. He watched the team get sold to a guy from out of town who acts like he is getting the team out of town as soon as a buddy shows up with a big enough truck to carry the load. He watched the new GM trade the team's best player, his co-captain, the team's highest paid player for a draft pick (a forward), a gimpy but highly paid piece of old garbage (also a forward), some spare change and oh, by the way they drafted another forward with their other pick. The sonics had three players at the SF spot before draft day. They walked away with six. Hmmmmm. To top that off, some idiot in Orlando says they will give you a max deal to play in a soft eastern conference with a dominant big already in the post. Hmmmm. A-Rod left a good team to go play for a mediocre one for a lot of money. Lewis left a bad team to go make a mediocre team into a potential conference contender. Hmmmm. We didn't complain because Lewis wasn't good enough, Art. We failed to complain because we thought he did the right thing!
Durant's shooting has stunk so far. He went 26-78 in Vegas, 5-19 from long range. If he wasn't getting to the line and being effective there (38-46), he would be called an over-hyped, big-time BUST. He had 8 rebounds, 2 assists and 6 steals over 4 games. Is he being heavily guarded? Does the rest of the team stink? I don't know. I am not sure I care. He's Kevin Durant. He's the next big thing. He is going to average like 50 points a game and make us forget all about Allen and Lewis. Or maybe he'll just be good and do enough great things to keep us on the edge of our seats and hoping that we get to see good turn into great here in Seattle. At least he still has his tonsils. I'm more ticked about the fact that NBA TV and MSG blacked out the Blazers and Knicks games that I recorded so I didn't even get to SEE Durant or Green play. I had no idea FSN picked up the Blazers game and I had the DVR record the NBA TV one which was blacked out. I have no clue why they blacked out the MSG broadcast. I can watch any other game on either station but the Sonics were blacked out.
I have been really ticked at Bennett for everything he has done and hasn't done. I have been pleased or ticked or sometimes both at everything Presti has done. Some days I want to cancel my season ticket. Other days I want to buy a second seat. Some days, well, I am not sure that I care.
That appears to be my problem. It started midway through last season. The Sonics were just plain bad, and they didn't seem to care. They showed up to most games but it just didn't look like anyone on the floor cared. On the business side, all the arena mess was floundering around like one of those bull elephant seals you see on Discovery HD, but the politicians and the Sonics ownership didn't really seem to care. Pretty soon I started to feel the same way.
I WANT to care. I want someone, anyone, to make me care.
I thought getting Durant would do it but then Bennett starts jawing and Presti trades Ray and they let Lewis walk and we get nothing concrete in their places. Green might be good. Szerbiak might be healthy enough to hit a few threes. West might be the fun athelete fans can rally around. They have a trade exception they might use to bring in a veteran.
I thought the Muckleshoots would come through with an arena deal that would be too good to pass up and the state would pony up the money and Bennett would see the light or at least Stern and the other owners would tell him to make it work to keep the larger market. Nothing is materializing.
I am just a fan. I have written letters. I have bought my tickets. I go to the games. I watch the games on TV. I listen to the games on radio and on the internet. I read about the team, I write about the team, and I talk about the team. I don't know what else I can do.
I want to care.
I don't think I am alone in that.
Would someone please just stand up, take a stand and MAKE me care.