With reports that the Sacramento Kings could sell their franchise to a Seattle-based ownership group in the near future, two Bulls in particular were especially pleased with the news.
Seattle native Nate Robinson and Vladimir Radmanovic, a member of the SuperSonics the name of Seattles franchise until its 2008 move to Oklahoma City for the first five seasons of his career, shared their enthusiasm about professional basketball returning to the city.
For our city, its big-time. Theyve been waiting for that for a few years now and the fans pretty much got their prayers answered, so for me, of course Im happy, just because my familys out there. My kids love to watch me play basketball, so going back home for me, Ill be ecstatic, said Robinson, who grew up in Seattle, is the son of a former Seattle Seahawks football player and attended the University of Washington, which is located in Seattle. I went to Gary Paytons basketball camps, Shawn Kemps basketball camps, Detlef Schrempf, I did it all, so I grew up a big Sonic fan and Im happy theyre back.
I was kind of ticked off when the Sonics moved, but it happens. But be patient and now look, were back, added the Bulls backup point guard, who admitted that while he rooted for the Sonics in the 1996 NBA Finals, he wasnt heartbroken when they lost to the Bulls, due to being a Michael Jordan fan. They have to give the franchise back its original name, which was ceded by Oklahoma Citys ownership. Thats a must. It wouldnt be the same. Seattle Kings? No way. The city wouldnt let that happen.
Radmanovic chimed in: Im excited. Im glad they got the team back. That town deserves to have a basketball team and Im sure theyll make the best out of it.
It was great. I was lucky enough to be there with some great players and we had some success. Not as good as we wanted to be, but we had a lot of support from the people in Seattle, continued the seldom-used reserve, who had perhaps the best years of his career with the Sonics, playing alongside the likes of Ray Allen on the organizations last playoff team in Seattle. That was a little disappointing, knowing that Seattle had a great fanbase already and to take away a team from them was a bad thing to do, in my opinion. But obviously, not many people from Sacramento are going to be happy about taking a team from Sacramento, so thats how it goes.
Even Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau seemed pleased about the potential move, saying before Wednesday nights game, Its a great basketball city and I dont want to speculate on teams being sold until it happens, but Seattle itself is a great city and I think it would be great for the league, so hopefully, at some point, there will be a team there again.