Thursday, June 14, 2012
Seattle Sounders Get No Mention from OKC Story
This may be typical over an arbitrary few weeks worth of time, but as the OKC Thunder story has blossomed and pundits are now predicting a dynasty for them, the only mention of Seattle is on how much the city blew it when they lost their Supersonics.
A closer look reveals that the loss of the Supersonics in terms of gate receipts has been made up evenly by the appeal of the MLS Sounders.
The home schedule for the Sounders is about half that of an NBA team.
When adding up the regular season and the extra games from Champions League and US Open, it amounts to approximately 20-22 games. An NBA regular season is 41 home games.
The average attendance for Sounders games is more than 32,000 people. Before they left Seattle, the Supersonics averaged less than 17,000 per home game.
Half the games, but double the attendance equals a wash.
The story has not been written comparing the OKC rise in the NBA with the Sounders charge nationally in MLS and internationally among Soccer enthusiasts.
All and all, it's about even.
The Sonics left in 2008 and the Sounders arrived in 2009.
Seattle is not only the biggest single city supporter of Soccer in the U.S now, it is also recognized internationally because it has embraced the sport with so much fervor.
Blame it on the rain. Seattle may look the part. Many people will say that Soccer fits because it looks like football from England.
Whatever it is, Seattle has found its calling and it wasn't the NBA.
While some Seattle fans may lament the passing of their Sonics and have the toughest time swallowing what is happening now in OKC, at least they have the greatest U.S. Soccer club story going.
They've won the US Open three years in a row and are still competing for this year's title.
They have yet to win MLS Cup, but they have reached the playoffs each year of their existence.
Besides winning, additionally, many would argue MLS owes Seattle a debt of gratitude. (Read The Turning Point in MLS History).
Posted by Howard M Alperin at 6/14/2012