We had a really great time this Friday at the Sonics alumni Christmas Party. A bunch of former employees got together with my ArenaSolution team, members of Sonicsgate, Shawn Kemp and any others. We don't all get in the same room often and we kept the agenda light, just having a drink and catching up on all the good things that are happening.
The only actual item on the agenda was a toast that I made. As usual I wound up tossing the script, cutting most of it out. People didn't want to listen to me. They wanted to be there with their friends and catching up.
I did take a minute to mention Wally Walker in the toast and I want to do the same thing here. I'll say it once and shut up about it, but it is important to me. I get that people don't like his GM moves but for gods sake move on. I shudder to think of how many REALLY stupid things I have said and done in public and how much I require the people around me to forgive and show understanding. My good friends support me by letting those mistakes pass and instead focusing on the good things I accomplish.
My biggest supporter at Save Our Sonics was Wally Walker.
Wally did everything he could to block the sale and to bring in the original Ballmer offer to get the team back and block the move.
Wally had the guts to sit in front of the cameras and tell Sonicsgate his side of the story.
Wally has been a huge mentor for me for years. We don't talk that often and he is always cautious against telling me what to do but he always listens and gives key advice when I need it.(sometimes I don't know that I need it)
Wally has given huge help to Chris Hansen without EVER asking for any recognition. He's not dumb(just the opposite) and he knows what his name attachment could do. He's not doing it to be part of the franchise or to get paid or to get credit. He is just a guy, right up there with Sonicsgate who consistently does whatever he can to support basketball in Seattle and the NBA. Without Wally Walker there is ZERO chance that Chris Hansen would be here bringing hope to Sonics fans.
I have a lot of "new friends" who want to be part of this ride up and that is great. The one decision I have made about it is as the new gang shapes up I am going to be true to my old friend too. People in suits have to accept Jason Reid and the Seattle Nightlife Association or they don't accept me. Sonicscentral teammates are just as welcome at our events as the high power political guys because they supported me long before I had any juice.
Wally is in that group. I'm tired of a really good guy being held so damn accountable for a few mistakes hes made and never getting credit for the good person he is or the good work he does.
I continue to get nothing but enthusiastic and positive vibes around the pursuit of the team and arena.
Virginia Beach does not concern me.
Merry Christmas to all of you. 2013 is going to be much bigger for all of us than 2012 was.