LOS ANGELES, June 2, 2014 — Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, banned from basketball for life for making racial slurs, needs to sell the team. Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has reached an agreement in principle to purchase the Clippers for $2 billion. The deal requires ratification by the other owners, and acceptance comes with a condition. Ballmer is expected to promise not to move the team to his home city, Seattle.
Seattle has been burning for a team since their Supersonics were taken away and turned into the Oklahoma City Thunder. Last year Seattle tried to pilfer the Sacramento Kings, only to have the deal nixed by owners at the last moment.
With Los Angeles having two teams and Seattle none, it may be time to spread the wealth around in the great tradition of sports socialism.
Since all of the arguments are based on emotion and not logical reasoning, there is no limit to how ridiculous an argument can be formed. With that, enjoy imaginary speculation, turn the ridiculous into the sublime, and picture various arguments that most people would never be crazy enough to consider.
The Los Angeles case against Seattle:
Nobody cares about Seattle. It is a miserable city with miserable weather. Players go to places like Los Angeles where they can party with celebrities or Miami where they can just party. Forcing young millionaires to live in Seattle defeats the purpose of being a young millionaire.
Seattle has protesters who burn down buildings for sport. The National Basketball Association is an evil corporation, and the protesters would destroy their new facility faster than one could say World Trade Organization. The team would go out of business once they are forced to pay peanut vendors a $50 per hour livable minimum wage.
If Los Angeles does not deserve two teams, then Seattle certainly does not. Portland already has the Trailblazers. Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington are the same thing. The Blazers are owned by former Microsoft founder Paul Allen. One Microsoft geek is enough. If nobody cares about Seattle, then even less than nobody, despite its mathematical impossibility, cares about Portland.
Move the Blazers to Olympia, Washington and rename the team the Pacific Northwest Blazers. After all, what the heck is a Supersonic anyway?
The Seattle case against Los Angeles
Los Angeles had the 1992 riots. Seattle people riot over politics, but recently Angelenos are the ones rioting over sports. Los Angeles is the phoniness capital of the world. The fans are completely fair-weather. There are so many things to do in Los Angles because it is an entertainment town and not a sports town. The Raiders returned to Oakland and the Rams left for St. Louis. The National Football League thrived and football fans survived. Los Angeles did fine with zero professional football teams. They will survive with one professional basketball team, which most cities do not have.
The solution is simple. Relocate the Lakers.
Why relocate the Lakers and not the Clippers?
The Lakers were great when Dr. Jerry Buss owned them. The Roman Empire developed cracks when great emperors were replaced with the son Nero. Buss’s children have Nero potential, to the detriment of the team. The Clippers are on the upswing. Doc Rivers is a great coach and Chris Paul and Blake Griffin are great players. The Clippers are replacing one of the worst owners with somebody who could become one of the best if he opens the wallet for players.
The Lakers have done the reverse. Jack Nicholson was recently at a Clippers game. If he can get over the Lakers, so can every other Hollywood celebrity. Besides, the Lakers began in Minneapolis. Returning them to Seattle is close enough.
What about relocating the New York Knicks to Seattle?
This is now more feasible than it would have been a couple of years ago. New York always had two teams, because New Jersey was never really considered a state. North Jersey is part of New York City and South Jersey is Philadelphia. Once the Nets moved from New Jersey to Brooklyn, everything became official. The Nets have Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce. The Knicks have decades of losing and the worst owner in sports not named Donald Sterling.
Those questioning what a Supersonic is can ask the same question about being a Knickerbocker. By moving the Knicks to Seattle, President Phil Jackson can be closer to his fiancée in Los Angeles and his mountain getaway in Montana. Jackson is an avowed socialist and a multi-millionaire. He would fit in perfectly in Seattle even more than on the Upper Westside of Manhattan.
Are there any serious solutions?
Some people really do need to be hit upside the head with a bar towel to know they are in a bar. The Clippers are the worst organization in the history of professional sports. They also have no natural geographical fan base.
The Cleveland Browns are losers, but they did win 50 years ago and their fan base is one of the best. Relocating them to Baltimore in 1996 was the sports equivalent of evil.
The Chicago Cubs have not won in over 100 years but many Chicagoans consider them and not the recent champion White Sox to be the real Chicago team.
Los Angeles is a Lakers town. 17 championships means a team stays. The only reason the Clippers have Chris Paul is because former NBA Commissar David Stern took socialism to a new extreme. Chris Paul was traded to the Lakers, and Stern rejected the trade. Stern got what he wanted, punishing a good team and rewarding a bad one. Stern is gone, and it is time to stop punishing success and rewarding failures. The annual draft is sufficient enough.
The Clippers have never won anything. There is no tradition to protect. They have never been to the finals, much less won one. Even Seattle and Portland each won an NBA championship several decades ago.
Relocate the Clippers to Seattle provided that Ballmer leaves behind the Clippers name, logo, colors, and history. Rename the team the Supersonics. When the NBA expands, award a franchise to San Diego. That is where the Clippers began. The Chargers left Los Angeles after one season rather than compete with the Rams. San Diego would welcome the Clippers back as the only basketball team in town.
It is as simple as dealing with Bocats, Hornets and Pelicans.