In the end Howard Schultz of Starbucks and the other owners of the Seattle Sonics choose the new team color to be not Sonic Green or Seattle Green but Money Green. What is one to expect from the owner of a coffee company that includes the word “bucks” in its name.
So who really thinks the Seattle Sonics will be here after this next season?
Art Thiel has a good column in the Seattle PI today. It’s titled “Hey Howard, we’re not morons” The fact is that Oklahoma City will have a vacant stadium in one year and that is exactly the same time commitment that the Sonics new owners agreed to stay in Seattle. After that they can buy out the last couple years of their lease at Key Arena and pack the moving vans.
Howard Schultz and company just packed their wallets with some $80 – $90 million dollars. Knowing that there were lots of cities like Oklahoma City, willing to pay big for a basketball team, what real incentive did they have to strike a deal with Seattle?
The problem was more one that Schultz and Company did not look at the Sonics as a community asset in the end or feel a sense of civic commitment to keep the team in Seattle. If they had, they would have involved the city more in the discussion of what to do before asserting their business perogative to sell whenever they wanted to whoever they wanted, without consulting the very same people they were putting down for not freely opening the public coffers to a private business.
As I said, in the end they showed their true colors – not Seattle Green or Sonic Green but Money Green.