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Rick Carlisle, Dwane Casey, Terry Stotts Hold Ties To Seattle Sonics

Seattle's fingerprints are all over the Dallas Mavericks NBA Championship, from Jason Terry to Rick Carlisle and beyond. Our city has become somewhat of a feeder to the NBA, and the basketball-rich culture in the Seattle is a hotbed for talent, both on the court and in coaching circles. And that talent played a big role in the Mavericks winning the NBA Championship on Sunday night as Terry, Carlisle and a few assistants left over from the Sonics days hoisted the Larry O'Brien Trophy at the conclusion of the NBA Finals.

The connections between the coaching staff of the Dallas Mavericks and Seattle run deep, and many spent time refining their approach with the Sonics back when the team was still alive and well. It begins at the top with Carlise, who wasn't a coach in Seattle but did work as an announcer for the Sonics. His staff also holds Sonics ties: Dwane Casey and Terry Stotts were each assistants in Seattle and should be familiar names to fans of the team. Even Tim Grgurich, an NBA lifer who spent time on the Sonics bench, earned a ring.

Even though it wasn't our own team, the connections the Mavericks hold made them a little easier to root for. Add in the path to the NBA Championship, which included a win over the Oklahoma City Thunder, and Seattle had somewhat of a rooting interest in these playoffs. Many will also recall Mark Cuban casting a dissenting vote during the Sonics relocation vote, and how he stood up for Seattle in a symbolic way.

Now if we could just get a team of our own back and make our own run instead of having to live vicariously through a team with ties to the area.