- the Mariners (known for the most spectacular chokejob before Yankees '04), and
- the Seahawks (I don't what this team is famous for. Hahaha)
But beside that, the Sonics will leave a legacy of basketball not many teams from medium-sized cities can boast of. An NBA championship, the electricity given to the people of Seattle with the exploits of Tom Chambers, Dennis Johnson, Shawn Kemp, Gary Payton and Ray Allen.
If there's one thing you'd know about Seattle aside from coffee and grunge, it's the Sonics. The Sonics put Seattle on the map. It's even the first major sports franchise in the middle of nowhere they call the Pacific Northwest, predating the Blazers by three years, and the Mariners and the Seahawks by a decade. If there was a franchise that made the people of Seattle display their civic pride, it's the Sonics.
Now of course, all good things come to an end, and apparently, some good things end up badly. It started when Howard Schultz, the guy who controls Starbucks (which closed a lot of barristas unemployed recently) sold the franchise to a consortium from Oklahoma City. To make the long story short, Howard screwed up, and now the new owners took advantage and effed up the whole team (actually, when they effed up the team, they got a reward -- Kevin Durant -- a reward for their effiness) on the way to mediocrity.
All for what? As we've seen recently, only the Hornets were sorta successful with their transfer of homes, if not for CP3 and D-West emerging from nowhere, the Hornets will be like the Grizzly Bears and the Bobcats with crappy attendance; their attendance will only creep up if a good team is coming into town (remember the Bobcats upset of the Lakers 2 years ago? Who knew a lot of Carolinans cared for the Bobcats; I thought they were rooting for the Tree Hill Ravens, no relation to Gary Payton.). How sure is Clay Bennett that the Oklahomans will embrace the Sonics, or whatever he plans to call them, like what they did with the Hornets a few years ago? Is this really a wise business decision? The Sonics have been in Seattle for forever and you'll uproot a tree, drive 2,000 miles across the continent to plant it at a foreign environment?
Basketball may come back to Seattle but the question is, will they still care? Will NBA fans still care?
Chalk up another one for Stern. Where effed up owners happens. And no, I'm not taking about the ex-Yahoo! employee, who incidentally disapproves this ingenious idea.