For longtime basketball fans in the region, invoking the name of the Seattle SuperSonics can still rankle, even years after the team left town and left many diehards heartbroken. A recent spate of rumors has cropped up surrounding the possibility that Seattle may soon receive another NBA franchise to fill the void left in the region.
John Hopperstad of Q13 FOX News reports that although many fans -- including the mayor of Seattle -- assume that any team that might wind up in Seattle would be rebranded as the Sonics, the reality may be far more complicated. The "Seattle SuperSonics" name still has an owner; Oklahoma City Thunder owner Clay Bennett still owns the rights to the name and team logo that fell by the wayside when he relocated and rebranded the team.
A spokesperson with the City Attorney’s Office said that while there is the possibility of using the Sonic name again, the NBA would need to approve the use of the name for a team in Seattle and "the Oklahoma City team has some rights to the team history that would need to be transferred."
Hopperstad spoke with Adam Brown of Sonicsgate, who remains optimistic about the team name situation.
"I think once we get a team, for PR purposes, and just as a sign of good faith, Clay Bennet will give us our history back," Brown said.
Regardless what happens with any new team, NBA fans will just be happy to once again have local basketball. But it would certainly not hurt anything if the Seattle SuperSonics made their triumphant return.
For complete coverage of the NBA situation in Seattle, please stay tuned to this StoryStream.