As we reported last week, Mayor Ed Murray recently met with NBA

As we reported last week, Mayor Ed Murray recently met with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver to discuss the ongoing prospects of bringing professional basketball to Seattle. And as Murray noted, it didn’t go great. Or, at the very least, the mayor was informed that the NBA “has no plans to expand [to Seattle] at this time.”


The news wasn’t necessarily unexpected, of course, at least for those who follow these things closely. But that’s not to say it wasn’t depressing, especially since it came on the heels of revelations that the required Environmental Review Process, currently being conducted by the city’s Department of Planning and Development, is behind schedule.

A return of the beloved Sonics seemed farther away than it had in some time, even if all of this was simply an affirmation of things we knew, deep down, all along.

Today, however, the group of wealthy dreamers led by hedge fund wunderkind Chris Hansen released a statement on their website hoping to assure the masses that hope is not fading.

“Not only has [Mayor Murray] asked his staff to look for ways to streamline and speed-up the Environmental Review Process, on his way to Washington DC last week he stopped by the NBA to meet with Commissioner Silver and express the city’s commitment to do its part to bring the NBA back to Seattle. That’s great,” the statement reads in part. “The Commissioner was very positive about Seattle but couldn’t make any commitments at this point, which is really to be expected. While we understand both Sonics fans’ and the Mayor’s disappointment, the most important task at hand remains getting the EIS process wrapped-up so we will be in the position to take advantages of future opportunities that arise, which can happen quickly and without years of advance notice that building an arena requires.”

Not feeling the arena excitement yet? Hansen and Co. weren’t finished …

“Our commitment to bring the Sonics back to Seattle is as strong today as it was the first day we announced the arena project–or the day of the great rally we all enjoyed at Occidental Park,” the statement continues. “The process has been exhaustive and at times frustrating, but in the end we will have completed a big step toward our goal of bringing NBA basketball back to Seattle.”

For basketball fans, it’s good to hear that’s still the goal … even if it’s a goal that hasn’t always felt within grasp lately. Hansen clearly believes there’s still time to rally.

The MOU approved by the Seattle City Council and King County Council back in late 2012 specifies that an NBA team must be acquired before construction begins on an arena. That MOU expires in 2017.