Chris Hansen is the man spearheading the charge to first buy the Sacramento Kings, and then make the team the newest version of the Seattle Supersonics. The Bay Area hedge fund manager had been relatively quiet regarding the entire process, until now.
NBA Commissioner David Stern set April 3 as the date when Hansen and his team must present its case to buy the team in front of the league’s Board of Directors. Obviously, one of the first things Hansen and Co. will be asked to prove is whether or not the city of Seattle itself will support a new team, and if so, how supportive it will be.
Thus, what the man has done (and we’ve got to say, the timing of it all is pretty impeccable) is twofold: First, he released these renderings of what a potential, sparkling brand-new stadium might look like. Then, and merely 11 hours later, he opened up a waiting list for those who would potentially like to buy tickets.
Those who had tickets back in 2008 — when the previous Sonics picked up, moved to Oklahoma City and took Kevin Durant with them — will be getting first dibs.
If you were living in the Seattle area, would these initial renderings get you pumped for a new/old basketball franchise?
Hansen is banking on it.
SonicsArena.com breaks down some features of the interior:
- Improved Viewing Angles: The creation of the Sonic Rings and resulting ability to significantly increase steepness of the lower bowl, results in MARKEDLY improved sight lines for all seating categories
- Reduced stratification between seating levels: Creating a more vibrant, festive, and social experience in the upper levels and giving typically premium seating amenities to all of our fans
- Increased Intimacy, Energy… and Noise: We believe that pushing the entirety of the seating bowl closer to the court and having 2,000-4,000 fans literally overhanging the game not only creates the most intimate venue in the NBA, but will also provide you with the opportunity to create the loudest, most energetic atmosphere in yet another pro sport—or better yet two!
Hansen’s design also introduces a luxury suite concept similar to CenturyLink Field (where the city’s Seahawks football team plays), that will provide lower level loge boxes only ten rows away from the court:
There are unconventional elements in the premium seating areas as well. The lower levels suites are located less than ten rows off the floor—and even closer to the ice. They’re designed as “pocket” suites that give direct suite access to the suite holders without creating an unsightly gap in the camera view of the lower seating level. We believe the upper suite level also represents both an evolution in Arena design and a recognition of the unique attributes of the Seattle Business Community. Instead of creating a level of “hermetically sealed” suites with a dedicated corridor that speaks to status superiority and isolation, we have instead opted for a flexible “Loge Suite” design that will allow us to offer varying suite layouts to groups and businesses of all sizes. The suite layouts provide a much more social, inclusive and fun atmosphere around shared bars and amenities with a balcony that overlooks the main club.
In order to better imagine how close the stadium’s seating will actually be to the court, this next rendering has been superimposed onto that of Brooklyn’s Barclay’s Center.
Here, we have the same concept, but using Orlando’s Amway Center as the example.
What do you think, Gamedayr Nation?
Is basketball finished in Sac-Town? Will the ghosts of Shawn Kemp and Gary Payton be revived in Seattle?
h/t Cosby Sweaters