Last week was a strange week. Somehow Sonics fans were oblivious to a lot of really good news. They ignored reports of a 2015 building opening, a $40-50 million per year regional sports network, another decisive legal victory and Ron Burkle's decision to drop out of Sacramento's investment group. Instead of feeling secure in these accomplishments the majority of fans seemed to buy into a public narrative of doom and defeat.
While we were feeling low a very small but vocal minority of Sacramento fans took the opportunity to say "I told you so" or poke fun in internet forums, twitter and other social media outlets.
I was personally embarrassed by the equally small minority of Sonics fans who chose to respond in kind with insults to their city and its valiant efforts. We don't need to do that. Understand that it is a very small minority and that they are not deserving of response. I encourage Sonics fans NOT to participate in debates on Sacramento forums or to say hurtful or dismissive things in ours. On nights like last night, when the momentum swings our way I ask you to be classy and gracious in your response and to actively correct the behavior of those fans who think they are doing us some kind of service by "standing up for us" and trying to start or win these absolutely meaningless but often hurtful battles of rhetoric.
STAY CLASSY SEATTLE!
As we move into the final week of this process I ask you again to think about the level to which this ownership group has been there for us. They started this process at a time when there was virtually no hope, with enough faith in the outcome to spend a fortune on land. They dedicated years to the process so that they were ready to step out with all their pieces in place and each time they have been faced with adversity they increase their resolve, meet it head on and blow it out of the water.
Have faith in them.
Even after this group returns the NBA to Seattle they will face challenges. Building a championship roster will test the fans patience. During those dark winter days when a young or rebuilding team inevitably struggles we need to remember how Chris Hansen stepped up for us last night. We need to buy into their vision and show huge passion for this franchise while they build it.
Chris has set an aggressive schedule for this building. He can make sure that he meets this schedule by hiring the best professionals in the world but we need to do our share by continuing to provide a supportive political environment. It is absolutely essential that all Sonics fans vote for candidates who have supported the arena in the mayoral primary coming up on August 6. A victory by one of our opponents in that race would send a terrible message while a strong showing of support for our proponents will reaffirm the regions commitment to the building.
Last week we worried and whined and spent countless hours debating the details of a deal that we really don't understand. At the end of the day Chris Hansen stepped up again to show he had it handled.
We know next week is likely to be even crazier and I am not going to kid myself that we will be able to avoid conversations about relocation but what about the week after that?
There is a strong chance that beginning April 20th we will very abruptly need to be basketball fans again. In preparation for the 2013 playoffs I have asked the staff to put together playoff series primers and player profiles for exciting players that have joined the league or emerged to play big roles since 2008.
PLEASE make an active effort to read and participate in this conversation. Actively invite your friends to do the same. The break will not only be good for your mental health and this forum but will fill a needed role in guiding the fan base towards knowledgeable passion for the game.
Let ownership handle the business deal. Our job as fans is to show everybody in Seattle about the passion we have for basketball, represented in a way that invites and encourages others to jump on board and love it with us.