When and Kings C Spencer Hawes hits free agency, can we safely assume the Oklahoma City Whatevers will not be amongst the bidders? Seattle native Hawes vented to the Sacramento Bee’s Sam Amick about the poor state of affairs for his hometown’s basketball fans.
“It’s a sad situation they’ve got going up there,” he begins. “It’s sad the way ¦ everyone’s handling it, from the league to the city, especially. It’s being poorly mismanaged. As a Sonics fan, you sit hoping someone is going to come in and intervene, that the people with the power will come in and put an end to it, and it doesn’t look like that’s happening.”
“You get a rich owner from Oklahoma City who is dead set on moving the team, and that’s it,” said Hawes, who spent his one collegiate season at Washington after attending Seattle Prep High School. “At first, he tried to hide (his intentions), and everyone saw right through that. Everyone from Seattle knew his intentions from the beginning. It was obvious.”
The Haweses have been Sonics season-ticket holders for as long as their only son can remember. Their house is a relative skybox to KeyArena itself, located in the Queen Anne neighborhood that overlooks the Sonics’ home floor from a hillside. When the Haweses come to tonight’s game to see their son play in his hometown for the second time in his career, they will walk to the game, just as they did when he was a child.
Hawes, who will decide today if his sprained left ankle is healed enough to participate, said he might have to take on a political battle that he can likely win: convincing his father, Jeff, to put an end to the family’s loyalty should the Sonics stick around for one or two more seasons.
“When your organization is getting snatched from underneath your feet as a fan, that’s a tough thing to deal with,” Hawes said. “I’m going to ask my dad, If they stay, what is he going to do with the season tickets? Are you getting rid of those? It’s hard to support a team where there’s no future for them.”
For Hawes, the situation could only be more personal if he was wearing a Sonics jersey. He can claim the next best thing, though, as he is the best of friends with Sonics rookie Kevin Durant, the resident face of the franchise.
“I know he likes the city, (and) he likes being there,” Hawes said. “But at the same time, he realizes that business is business and sometimes that’s how it goes.”