Saturday, January 3, 2009

Carmelo'd

McC already posted on the game but I just wanted to say kudos to the men in rainbow for another epic almost-win. To think; they nearly beat a team above .500 for the first time all year. The Nuggets! But they didn't. Beating the Nuggets in a close game would have finally shown all the nay-sayers that the Thunder are FOR REALS now, and would have proven how far they've come since the beginning of the year and how much they've improved since last year, when, in fact, they did beat the Nuggets:



Progress!

24 comments:

McC said...

OH NOES! Sell low!

Anonymous said...

Anyone know why okies care so much about attendance?

What's wrong with them. Every other comment or article out of OKC deals with "great fan support", "loudest fans in the NBA". What's up with that?

f prevett said...

@ Anonymous:

Because they don't know the business side of the NBA. All they know is what city and civic leaders and the newspaper have told them.

And those city and civic leaders only care about Oklahoma City being mentioned on SportsCenter every night, even though it's usually negative and clowning on OKC.

They don't know any better, nor do they realize that a good number of Oklahomans who care about pride (and maybe basketball too) are embarassed by all this.

f prevett said...

I'll elaborate.

Small media markets like Oklahoma City and Memphis that have teams that are struggling on- and off-the court make less money from broadcasting revenue.

I've also read in various other places that the Thunder's TV ratings IN OKLAHOMA CITY are dead bottom, and merchandise sales are last in the NBA as well.

There aren't as many revenue streams for this team to work with, apparently, and fans aren't responding the way the owners had hoped. Selling tickets is one thing. You gotta sell merchandise too, and there doesn't seem like there's as much outreach with respect to that (and I don't mean "outreach" in the form of the NBA Cares program. EVERY team does that in whatever community they are in). It isn't just about getting butts in the seats. These fans seem to think it is, and they couldn't be more mistaken.

Also, am I the only one who lives in the OKC metro area that has noticed that the organization could do a little better job of promoting the team? Where are the billboards, for example, like there were when the Hornets "rented" the joint for two years following Katrina? Where's the marketing of the team itself happening? I'm not seeing it at all. Surely the owners realize this ... or there isn't any capital to pay for marketing. And if that's the case this team is in more trouble fiscally than anyone thinks.

And it serves Oklahoma City right, the way I see it. The small but powerful oligarchy that dictates how Oklahomans are supposed to think (i.e. exactly like them) had everybody wrapped around its proverbial pinky and convinced everyone, "Yeah, we'll get an NBA team and we'll be Big League." It doesn't work that way. If people in Oklahoma had the same concern for the state's education, infrastructure, and diversity issues (i.e. putting a muzzle on the Xtian Fascists like Sally Kern and quit sending Dumb and Dumber back to the US Senate every election cycle), then Oklahoma would be on its way to being "big league" by attracting new industry and QUALITY jobs to this state, and maybe we won't have the brain drain that we have.

Anonymous said...

I know no one will believe me but I have it on good authority that Clay and his buddies are hurting financially. The Thunder are not only losing money but it's affecting his ownership group. Some of those members are looking to sell and they can't find any buyers.

Also, the talk within the sports media is that OKC is trying to hard to be liked. They don't seem to understand that stealing a franchise isn't going to win them any popularity contests. One reporter told me that he was asked over 25 times how he liked being in OKC and if he thought they were a real big league. He added that one Oklahoman reporter asked him several times if his experience in OKC was better than it was in New Orleans. Get this. When the reporter told him New Orleans was a world class city and that it's hard to compete with their the food and atmosphere the reporter told him "but that place is a dump, how can that be true". The reporter politely told him that New Orleans was a major city and that they are just better at hosting events than OKC, the Oklahoman reporter was pissed.

My source also said the Oklahoman reporter asked him a lot of questions about Seattle and that the reporter didn't like any of the answers.

I won't divulge my sources and I totally understand if no one believes me. But I did find it incredibly telling of what's going on in OKC.

Anonymous said...

f prevett, thanks for that info. I think the fact that local advertising in OKC just won't generate as much money as it would for other larger markets, combined with the fact that the McClendon lost a f load of money this year (I think he actually has the highest stake in the team if i recall correctly) means the team is avoiding spending on advertising. i'd be pissed if i were an okc resident (just as pissed if we had built the sonics a 500 mil arena outside of seattle)

f prevett said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
f prevett said...

Anonymous #2 wrote:

"One reporter told me that he was asked over 25 times how he liked being in OKC and if he thought they were a real big league. He added that one Oklahoman reporter asked him several times if his experience in OKC was better than it was in New Orleans. Get this. When the reporter told him New Orleans was a world class city and that it's hard to compete with their the food and atmosphere the reporter told him "but that place is a dump, how can that be true". The reporter politely told him that New Orleans was a major city and that they are just better at hosting events than OKC, the Oklahoman reporter was pissed."

Interesting info and doesn't surprise me that alleged "professional journalists" are spending so much time fishing for compliments and worrying about what people think of them.

From my observation and monitoring of local media, I could guess who I think would ask questions like that and feel pretty positive that they are probably doing it at the behest of The Oklahoman's boardroom/front office. Could be anyone with a byline there.

If it's not someone from The Oklahoman, then it's a TV guy and the one that I think of is one with a history of on-air editorializing while the Hornets were here. More than once I saw this guy -- the sports director at his TV station, introduce Hornets highlights on his nightly newscasts by referring to them as "Our Hornets." Sorry I just don't think that's cool.

I don't claim to be in the know or have any kind of inside track or anything (I wish I did). I do observe the local media (and the media as a whole) with an extra-critical eye and ear. I hold a BA in journalism, actually, so I can't help but be an especially picky, opinionated media consumer.

Anonymous said...

I know no one will believe me but I have it on good authority that the state of Washington is facing a 5 billion dollar budget deficit and there is not a chance in hell that Frank Chopp will let one penny of taxpayer money go to any arena this year. I've also discovered that without those state funds, clay clay will not have to pay 30 million dollars to help pay for an arena.

A little birdie whos name rhymes with lyin sloberson told me that if the state doesn't approve those funds then Ballmer will give up and Seattle will not see another team for more than a decade.

The Boston Globe says that Seattle is now Blazer turf...."With the Seattle SuperSonics now extinct, the Portland Trail Blazers are quietly becoming the NBA's Team of the Northwest. Their 55-game cable package is being broadcast in Seattle for the first time this season. Getting Seattle basketball fans to make the trek to Portland might be a little trickier, though, since it is a three-hour drive. But the Blazers have several Seattle ties that add to the attraction. Team owner and Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen is a Seattle native and owner of the Seattle Seahawks and MLS Seattle Sounders FC. Allen is considering bringing co-branded Blazers-Seahawks-Sounders sports camps to Seattle."

Tom Gugliotta said...

To anonymous above me: we all know who you actually are because you say the same shit on EVERY SINGLE POST.

Why on earth would you even think that Boston has a grasp on what happens in Seattle and Portland? Its like me wanting to know whats going on with the Marlins stadium in Miami, and picking up the San Francisco Chronicle. The only fact in that statement is that people in Washington can order Blazers games. The rest is speculative bullshit by a Boston sports writer.

Paul Allen voted against the Sonics moving. Why would he do that when he clearly would benefit the most from it? Because he's not interested in fucking people over from his home city. So any future crap about Paul Allen creating some Blazers Empire is just that - crap.

And why would Brian Robinson give you inside information? You're nobody.

Anonymous said...

Tom, don't hate the playa, hate the game....I'm just keepin it real. Even though "you people" seem to find comfort in wallowing in your bitterness over the Sonics becoming extinct and blindly lashing out with your hate filled distain for the Oklahoma City Thunder and their owner "Oklahoman of the Year" Clay Bennett, it serves no useful purpose.

Instead of continuing down the same distructive path like mindless lemmings, "you people" should try and change your focus to something more constructive. Quit blaming everyone else for your problems and take responsibilty for your own actions. Try pulling yourselves up by your bootstraps and act like men for a change. ACT LIKE YA GOT A PAIR!!!

Posting the Boston piece was just an illustration of how the rest of the country views the situation in Seattle. There is a lot of speculation that the Blazers are planning on moving their D league team to Seattle as Key Arena's anchor tennent. It's a great place to watch basketball, not a bad seat in the house...

Anonymous said...

"Instead of continuing down the same distructive path like mindless lemmings, "you people" should try and change your focus to something more constructive. Quit blaming everyone else for your problems and take responsibilty for your own actions. Try pulling yourselves up by your bootstraps and act like men for a change. ACT LIKE YA GOT A PAIR!!!"



Same could be said of OKC, I'm willing to bet Kansas City fans will be telling you the same thing.

Anonymous said...

I can vouch for most of what has been posted above about the OKC media. Reporters do feel odd being asked those questions by other reporters. I'm not a sports journalist but I do know quite a few that travel with NBA teams and that is what I heard.

I guess there is really nothing wrong with OKC reporters asking those questions and to the best of my knowledge they are not really asking other journalist but they do grill visiting NBA players about OKC as an NBA city and if the Ford Center has the league's best fans.

A lot of these traveling reporters love this blog. :)

Anonymous said...

"They are not really asking other journalist but they do grill visiting NBA players about OKC as an NBA city and if the Ford Center has the league's best fans."

Well if they're journalists and they're asking NBA players these questions could you post a link to some of the players responses?

Anonymous said...

Just what I was afraid of...just another lying cockroach who disappears into the cracks in the walls when confronted.

Thank goodness we were able to flush out that liar.

Anonymous said...

Tom Ward had to liquidate $50million of his stock today, at $2 per share below what it is trading at.

Also, Cheasepeke sold of $400Million in gas holdings to stabilize their balance sheet. Mcclendon is struggling to hold on to control of the company.

These guys are hemmoraging money due to energy prices being down, and their local economy struggling.

The NBA was so stupid to go to this 46th largest market, a market completely dependent on the volatile energy market. Then they have an ownership group that is highly levereged and highly concentrated in one industry, energy. I hope the whole thing implodes, and they are forced to sell the team, or gut the roster like Memphis did last year. OKC deserves the team they got.

Claymate said...

"Well if they're journalists and they're asking NBA players these questions could you post a link to some of the players responses?"

Here's one:

http://tinyurl.com/9v6g99

Mike Baldwin says Krstic signed with OKC because of the crowds. I'm sure he would have turned down an offer from, say, Memphis.

Anonymous said...

"Instant karmas going to get ya"...

Isn't it funny that as you laugh at others misfortune, the state of Washington is facing a 5 billion dollar deficit that will insure no money for an arena and no new team.

The Thunder will be fine and flourish. The Sonics are extinct and aren't coming back.

Anonymous said...

From Hoopsworld: http://www.hoopsworld.com/Story.asp?story_id=11124

"I know I am coming from Europe but I have to say that I am very proud of the fans and support we have here. Very few teams have the atmosphere we have. The fans come day after day regardless of our standings. The games I had seen so far were very good, the fans know good basketball and appreciate when the team does a good job. They can see we are a young team and that we need all the support we can get. I like that I am joining a team that is new and just starting to establish itself. I have only been in Oklahoma City for a few weeks, but I'm really starting to like it."

"I am working hard to figure how everything works. The coaching staff have been great. I am working hard on my conditioning and on learning all the plays. Its clear that they really care for their players and their development. They literally assigned a person to help me figure everything out. Even before I signed with the Thunder it was clear what a classy organization this was."

Tom Gugliotta said...

To Okie anon:

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

You are fucking clueless. There is a tenant in Key Arena right NOW! You're such a bullshitter, and a hopeless loser. The fact that you think the Seattle fans are completely at fault exposes you as a total dumbass and mental invalid.

Ive seen OKC fans who have enough tact to admit that they were unhappy with the way they got a team, or even say that Sonics fans got screwed over. You, on the other hand, are a complete fucktard and make your city continue to look like dogshit culturally and intellectually, while overshadowing the decent people who live there. You are Clay Bennett's tool.

Seattle became a pro sports city in1967, even more so in the late 70s. Most likely, the rest of the country still does not consider OKC a pro sports city even with an NBA team. Before you say "bullshit," ask yourself this: do you consider Memphis a pro sports city? Well, you guys are even worse than them.

So try to understand what happens to sports fans of a 40 year old teams when their team is taken away - they CARE. Because they are sports fans; NOT fairweather fans or bandwagon fans. And because they care, why the hell should they shut up about all this? If you can't take the criticism, stop bitching and ACT LIKE YA GOT A PAIR!!!

(Also, what the hell is that about pulling yourself up by the bootsraps? You used that in completely the wrong context. You sound like some kind of a phony conservative.)

PS - The blog is awesome, keep it up.

Tom Gugliotta said...

And about Krstic:

If you were stuck in a shit job and an offer came for a better higher level job, even though the new job was the worst of jobs at this higher level, you would take it.

And after you take it, would you spend your first hours complaining about the new job's workplace and taking potshots at your boss, or would you kiss ass until you had made enough money to get the fuck out for a better job?

In short, what Krstic said has been said about every team, in every league, everywhere. Also, LOL at using a Nenad Krstic quote to give merit to OKC and its Thun-turds.

Anonymous said...

Don't get your panties all bunched up, Tom. Do tou kiss your mother with that mouth? Must be a reflection on how she raised you.

Nobody feels bad about how we got our team, Tom. It was't our fault that they went broke in Seattle. If they hadn't moved here, it would have been somewhere else. They were losing money every year in Seattle and that couldn't continue.

Seattle's arena just no longer measured up and Seattle wasn't willing to do what it took to keep them, you expected some rich person to foot the bill and none was willing but don't take my word for it....

Clock is ticking for city's NBA hopes
What happened to the desire to remodel KeyArena? What happened to the push for another NBA team? Where is Seattle's civic pride?

Steve Kelley
Seattle Times staff columnist

Inside KeyArena these days it feels like a ghost town. It looks tacky and small-time. And the Key seems dingy and forgotten, like some musty museum.

Even at the pre-Christmas, Saturday afternoon game between top-10 teams Connecticut and Gonzaga, the arena didn't feel like it was living up to the event. It felt cramped and uncomfortable.

The crowd was loud, but the gym, which reopened in 1995, seemed old and tired. After visiting so many bigger, more comfortable arenas in Kansas City, Philadelphia, Portland and Glendale, Ariz., in recent months, I thought the state of KeyArena was embarrassing to a city the size of Seattle.

Seattle is developing a national reputation for what it can't do.

It can't keep a basketball team, can't fix its arena, can't build a light rail system, can't remove its snow.

Sometimes, it seems the only thing the city has going for it is its geography.

And these days, KeyArena looks more like a billboard advertising the city's failures.

Googs said...

You have too much time on your hands. Stop reading other cities newspapers. Why do you put so much stock into what columnists write? Its called OPINION. How stupid are you, really?

Why should we have paid 100% for what would have been the most expensive arena in the NBA? Bennett's group offered to pay ZERO PERCENT. If he had even offered to pay 1/3 or 1/2, I wouldn't be saying anything. The current arena had been renovated less than 15 years ago.

The proposed stadium would have cost more than Qwest Field (a FOOTBALL STADIUM, mind you), and only about 15 million less than Safeco Field, a baseball stadium with a massive expensive retractable roof. Paul Allen paid for about 1/3 of Qwest himself, so yeah owners DO do that. We had to pay for Safeco ourselves.

If you think paying for a new sports arena is more important than funding, say, education, then you dumbasses deserve your 4 win basketball team.

And complaining about language on a blog? Really? Will you act like you got a pair please?

bonesbarry said...

Durant's Future Former Team beat the Knicks. The Knicks beat the Celtics. The Celtics were World Champs. That means DFFT is the World Champ now, right?