Friday, August 1, 2008
Oklahoma City Purchases 66ers
Wassup. Back from the mountains now and better than ever. I had a blast and grew a mountain beard ala Jake Plummer. I hope you missed reading me as much as I missed being read. OK, maybe not...
I could rip (constructively, of course) Zorgon's list like he ripped mine, but I don't really think that's necessary. It was sort of straight-forward anyway, and I think that Zorgon did a good job except that I might have put Russ Westbrook a tad higher. What really sticks out from the list if the startling lack of talent on this team. Anytime your 3rd and 4th best players are Wilcox and Collison, you know you're in trouble.
What I'm really here to talk about though is the recent purchasing of the D-League Tulsa 66ers by Clay Bennett and the City. OKC becomes just the third NBA team to own its own D-League squad. The others...only top Western Conference powers the Los Angeles Lakers and San Antonio Spurs.
Though I don't think anyone around here called the buying of a D-League squad, I don't think it can be called a surprise. It's common knowledge that for the last couple of years, the OKC organization has been following the Spurs path to success. They hired Sam Presti and P.J. Carlesimo from the Spurs a few years ago, and spent this last draft picking defensive and international players. Maybe, they figured this was the next step. Not that the D-League was really responsible for any Spurs rings. I think lottery luck has more to do with it, something the Seattle team was hit and miss on in the last couple of years (heres to better luck for OKC)
I think both sides win in this case, or at least theoretically. Tulsa (again, theoretically) should become more attached to the OKC now, helping with merchandising and building a state-wide fan base. However, I think it can't be overlooked that a good deal of jealous Tulsans still resent the great things that have happened to "cow town" and will insist for the rest of their lives that the BOK Center is, was, and always will be better than the Ford Center. Still, a good many Tulsans will gladly follow the Team-That-Shall-Someday-Be-Named.
Also, owning a D-League team does give the team a lot more control on the development of their players. They can do things that they know are in their best interest and sleep easily at night knowing that their developmental players are in their own hands.