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The owner was/is Clay Bennett (he bought it from Starbucks owner Howard Shultz) and he bought it
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Posted by BackseatGM on 2013-01-08 13:35:06

In Reply to: IIRC, legislation failed. Sonics attendence was slipping a ton posted by PNQ on 2013-01-08 13:05:41

with every intention of taking it to OKC, even though he insisted that was not the case. Possibly the worst kept secret in professional sports. One of the minority owners even openly admitted they never intended to keep the team in Seattle. Attendance slipped because everyone knew the team was as good as gone. He did nothing to encourage attendance because it helped his intention to ask for permission to relocate. I can't remember any specific acts except them moving their radio half of the simulcasts to a station who's signal was so weak you couldn't hear it 10 miles away. It was clearly a lame duck year.

As far as funding, I don't remember a specific vote against a new arena or a renovation, and I'm too tired to look it up, but the non-sports fan voters had already helped to fund both the Mariners park in '99 (I think) and the Seahawks brand new stadium and they had pretty much had it with requests from sports teams, especially with the economy taking a sharp downturn. I won't defend Seattle or Washington State's efforts to keep the Sonics but they weren't lost because of fan apathy. Check out Sonicsgate if you've got the time and the interest.



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