At today's press conference Clay Bennett announced the ownership groups plan to apply for arbitration to try to get out of the remaining two years of the lease, making next year their last in this region. According to everything I've read this isn't a lease that is available to be go to arbitration, so I'm a bit flabbergasted by why this is the approach that they've taken...then it hit me: we're getting somewhere.
From the beginning Clay Bennett and his group have said they will give a one year window where they will pursue arena obligations within this market, it seems that today is October 31st, Happy Halloween everyone.
Then again why should I be shocked that Clay has been less than truthful about when his dates for getting things done would be. Only difference in this case the date is earlier than his normal sandbagging till the last minute. Wonder why that is? Because he's got nowhere to go.
How is he going to convince anyone that he's tried to make things work here, the first person to show me what the ownership's share of the plan to the legislature is I'll make sure you get tickets to a game this year (hint, I don't have the seats and he never made those numbers known). How can he say he's tried every means when just last Monday the Muckleshoot Tribe said they'd pay for the financing plan for an arena in Auburn, but to my knowledge Clay has never gotten back to them. Mayor Nickles stepped forward and offered that if the team could come up with 100 million dollars to put towards a project he would look into both redoing Key Arena or building a new structure on the grounds. Clay's response was of course 'if all he wants to talk about is redoing the Key then we have nothing to talk about'. Which is telling because that's all Clay's done in the last six months, not talked.
Like every other step in this process the minute there is positive traction to get something done, Clay comes and tries to ruin it. Like every other time he's tried I'm fairly confident that this will lead to nothing more than the citizens of this city becoming more united in the stance that he's not taking what we've invested into for the last 40 years.