Adam Silver: Some Discussion About NBA Returning To Seattle

Once the NBA finalizes its new media rights deal, it can turn its attention to perhaps more pressing matters as far as some fans are concerned.Adam Silver, NBA news

That’s right, it’s the possible return of the Seattle SuperSonics. You remember them, don’t you? With the likes of Gary Payton and Shawn Kemp and Xavier McDaniel and Spencer Haywood and Ray Allen and many others to their name. Even Kevin Durant was a member before the franchise bolted for Oklahoma City in 2008.

Well, good news, fans of Seattle pro basketball. You are on the radar of NBA commissioner Adam Silver. So are several other spots.

“There’s been some discussion about going back to Seattle, potentially,” he told NBC Sports Boston, via BasketNews. “Las Vegas, no doubt, is very interested in a team. Mexico City one day. But there’s lots of other U.S. cities and Canadian cities, frankly, that have reached out to us to tell us they’d be interested.”

Yeah, well, no one cares about those other cities. Not as much as they do Seattle — which has a long and storied tradition. Bring back the Sonics, and you will pack the arena and win in the court of public opinion.

The commissioner and the NBA realize that — no matter how much he tries to temper expectations. Silver also has to know that returning pro basketball to Seattle will go down as one of his greatest achievements.

It seems it will happen. Not if, but when.

But Silver and the league do need to take it one step at a time, and finalize the media rights deal before thinking about and tackling what’s next. That’s why Silver is offering perspective and reason about expansion.

“We have to understand what our long-term media relationships are before we look to expansion. We’re in the process of wrapping up those deals now,” he said. “They’re going to be long-term deals. I’m hoping we’re not done yet, but they’ll be successful in terms of generating more money for the league and the teams, and then we’ll be in a position to look at expansion.

“It’s not preordained that we’ll expand. I’ve said it before — you’ve got to look at the dilution, potentially, of talent, but there’s so much great basketball being played around the world. I don’t think there’s any doubt that, over time, this league can sustain two more teams. And there’s interest in the market, so once we finish our media deals, we’ll turn our attention to that.”

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