Russell Wilson Looking to Bring NBA, NHL to Seattle

SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 19:  Quarterback Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks drops back against the San Francisco 49ers during the 2014 NFC Championship at CenturyLink Field on January 19, 2014 in Seattle, Washington.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Russell Wilson, the Seattle Seahawk quarterback who brought the city its first and only major-four sports championship to date, may have endeared himself even more with the Emerald City.

On Monday, Wilson announced he has joined the Sonics Arena Group or SDO via his Twitter.

The group, headed up by entrepreneur Chris Hansen, is hoping the 2013-14 Super Bowl champ can help in their on-going mission to return professional basketball to the city, as well as bringing NHL to the city.

Details into the estimated amount of Wilson’s contribution are unknown, but his presence could help gain greater traction after the city council voted against giving up part Occidental Avenue to help construct a sports arena in May.

Wilson, who was drafted by the Seahawks in the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft, has previously shown his support for the NBA returning to the city after SuperSonics relocated to Oklahoma City in 2008. After May’s 5-4 decision, he used the aforementioned social media platform to vent his frustrations and try and unite the city.

The present state of additional teams in the market don’t appear to be going well. There is some interest in renovating the Key Arena for hockey purposes and jumping on the chance at netting the city an NHL franchise. While Seattle has always been one of several cities in the fold, June’s expansion saw just one market enter the league–Las Vegas.

At thirty-one teams though, the NHL is almost certainly looking to expand to another market–and the imbalance of East versus West, bodes well for Seattle versus places like Quebec City or Hamilton, Ontario. Wilson’s presence could put them over the top when the league comes sniffing around in the not too distant future.

Wilson, has struggled this season, largely because of injury. He’s come on as of late with back-to-back wins, including an impressive road win in New England on Sunday by a 31-24 final. He’s completed 45 of 63 passes in the consecutive victories while Seattle boasts a 6-2 record, hoping to return to the Super Bowl after going back-to-back in 2014 and 2015. The latter of those two appearances he’d like to forget.

If the super athlete is able to bring the NHL and not the NBA to the city it would be somewhat ironic as hockey is the one sport Wilson did not excel at during his high school and collegiate career. In addition to his career in the NFL, he was also a 2010 fourth round pick by the Colorado Rockies of the MLB, listed as a second basemen and a successful high school basketball player. But NHL commissioner, Gary Bettman won’t care if the money is there and an arena is stable. To this point, Bettman  has been tight-lipped to say whether or not the league will begin contemplating further expansion. Presently the league has 16 teams in the Eastern Conference and beginning next season, 15 in the Western.

Bringing hockey might have to be the necessary step in helping increase the odds of an NBA return. If they can bring in one or both, Wilson’s legacy will extend far beyond a Super Bowl ring. Who knows, maybe even fans will forget about the final 26 seconds from 2015.


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