NBA commissioner Adam Silver said in an interview with C.J. McCollum — yes, that C.J. McCollum — that he’s considering the idea of an expansion at some point in the near future. And on the list of cities being highlighted as potential homes to NBA franchises, Seattle is near the top.
“I think it’s just a question of when the right time is to seriously start thinking about expansion,” Silver said in an interview on The Player’s Tribune. “Think about the state we’re in the league right now where [it is] amazing to me that, coming off of these Finals, you have some fans saying, ‘There’s only one good team in the league.’
And I’m thinking, well, if people really believe that even though we have 450 of the best players in the world, and 450 players can only form one really good team, probably doesn’t make sense to expand in terms of dilution of talent.
Now I don’t really believe that, and I think these things correct themselves. And I don’t want to put a precise timeline on it, but it’s inevitable at some point we’ll start looking at growth of franchises, that’s always been the case in this league, and Seattle will no doubt be on a short list of cities we’ll look at.
From 1967 to 2008, the Seattle Supersonics reigned supreme as having one of the most rabid fanbases in the country. The city enjoyed several all-time greats, including Spencer Haywood, Lenny Wilkins, Shawn Kemp, Gary Payton, Ray Allen and eventually Kevin Durant.
The Supersonics, however, relocated and re-branded in 2008, becoming the Oklahoma City Thunder franchise we know today. The departure has left a void in Seattle the NBA has yet to fill.
Current and former NBA players with ties to the area, including Allen and Jamal Crawford, have clamored for the league to bring back the excitement and hysteria that surrounded the Supersonics. And if Silver eventually decides an expansion is on the table, it appears the league may finally give the people what they want.