Tuesday, May 5, 2009

What might have been in Seattle?

This blog is a personal one for me, because for three years I watched these two guys combine to make the Sonics at least respectable and potentially a playoff contender with the right compliments. Now, Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis are facing each other in the NBA's Eastern Conference semifinals between the Boston Celtics and Orlando Magic, far removed from their Seattle past, fighting for an NBA title. Meanwhile, Seattle is an empty NBA shell, with no team, no hope for a team since the state legislature voted down a potential bill that would have refurbished KeyArena and only memories to grasp to.

If the Sonics had retained Allen and Lewis -- Allen was traded and Lewis signed with the Magic within four days in June 2007 -- perhaps Seattle would still have basketball. While Oklahoma City -- formerly the Sonics -- prepares to be a contender in perhaps 2013, Allen and Lewis are seizing their opportunity for championship success now, which is the only thing that really matters. How many times have we seen teams that were supposed to be juggernauts in the future and it never materialized. Chicago was supposed to resurrect the Jordan days with Eddy Curry and Tyson Chandler. How did that work out?

Dallas was supposed to push Houston, Utah and San Antonio in the mid and late 1990s with Jamal Mashburn, Jason Kidd and Jim Jackson, but those three couldn't get along. Fact is, that preparing for the future is a smart move but never guaranteed. Proven commodities such as Allen and Lewis potentially bring a much bigger return than unproven rookies who may never reach their potential. Seattle learned that the hard way.