Slick Watts has a generous view of David Stern: He thinks the NBA commissioner will do right by Seattle this time. Nevertheless, the former Sonics point guard would prefer, if such a choice were available, that the replacement for the Sonics be an expansion team.
Former winner Donald Earl Watts, 61, is a regular returnee at the Sports Star of the Year event, this time Jan. 26 at Benaroya Hall. With his bald head, crooked headband, colorful speech and energetic play, Watts, a native of Rolling Fork, MS., was an instant hit with Seattle fans in the Sonics’ early years. The highlight of his eight-year NBA career was 1975-76, when he led the NBA in assists and steals.
Watts has remained a lifelong Seattle resident and supported local sports, providing a son, Donald, to the University of Washington basketball program. As much as Watts wants to see the NBA in town, he told SPNW’s Art Thiel that he thinks waiting for an expansion team is the better option, rather than pursue the Sacramento King or one of the other weak franchises
Hansen has said he is open to the idea, but he put down an offer of $341 million (on a $525 million value) for 65 percent of the Kings last month. The NBA has offered no plan or even timetable for expansion, but said it will consider a qualified counteroffer from Sacramento business leaders to keep the Kings in town as long as plans for a new downtown arena are included.