If they build it, will they come?
That’s the question in Seattle, where rumors that the NBA may consider expansion after the new Collective Bargaining Agreement is in place have sparked a renewed effort to get an arena built. Other reports have shot the expansion rumors down — and I have heard the same, that most owners have no interest — but none of this changes the basic fact that without an arena there is zero chance of getting a team.
The current most popular athlete in Seattle — Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson — is now on board with getting an arena built.
The plan to build a new arena is the SoDo area of Seattle took a hit last May when the City Council — hearing the opposition from the powerful unions at the port — shot down a street vacation that seemed a routine step and was necessary to get the arena built. The Arena effort took a step back, but ass assessed its situation and is trying to move forward again.
Getting someone like Wilson on board helps — both because of his profile and because he can get a message out in Seattle that will cut through the clutter and noise.
They are still a ways away from a new arena in Seattle that could house an NBA team, but this is a step in the right direction. Get it built, and maybe by then the league will either more seriously consider expansion or have another team that could be looking to move.