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Fan Question: Would Kevin Durant Go Back If Seattle Gets NBA Franchise?
KING5.com reports NBA superstar Kevin Durant still has feelings for his first NBA city. He was quoted at an All-Star news conference as saying "I still love Seattle. It will always have a place in my heart. Hopefully, they're having a talk about getting a team there soon, so we'll see."
On the eve of the 2012 NBA All-Star Game, in which Durant will start, he brings up a good point. Seattle wasn't a bad sports town. The Seahawks, though not stellar, at least went to one Super Bowl. The Seattle Sounders of Major League Soccer have routinely been atop the league's attendance since the franchise started.
For reasons other than a lack of an arena, Seattle doesn't have an NHL franchise that would matchup well against the Vancouver Canucks. Reuters reported there was a proposal for a new arena on the table back in December.
Would Durant have the audacity to go back to Seattle after his contract with OKC is done? The superstar lamented the way the move was made, saying it was "tough" for the team's fans. Durant's contract in Oklahoma City expires after the 2016 season, according to ESPN. By that time, Seattle should have a sparkling new arena and even a team if potential owners get proposals approved.
The Thunder aren't going away any time soon. Home games sell out and it's the only big-time professional sports franchise in town. If Durant goes back to Seattle, he would have to sign with the potential new team as a free agent or be traded.
Durant's love for his former town goes back to his rookie season. The forward scored 1,624 points en route to NBA Rookie of the Year honors. He had nearly twice the point total of any of his teammates en route to a 20.3 points per game average at the young age of 19. Like LeBron James and Kobe Bryant, Durant's status as a young star in the NBA was achieved when most future NBA stars are still in college. The University of Texas product's career has only elevated since then.
By the time Durant's contract is up, teams will know how much he is worth and what he brings to the table. He may not go back to Seattle as an expansion franchise because the team may not win as much. If another club relocates, Durant might go to the Great Northwest should the price be right and the team is a perennial playoff contender.
Seattle is probably like someone's first love in high school. The experience is unforgettable and sticks with you the rest of your life.
William Browning has been a fan of the Oklahoma City Thunder ever since the team relocated from Seattle. As the closest NBA team to Branson, Mo., the Thunder serve as the regional team for southwest Missouri.
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