Friday, June 15, 2012

Miami Heat and Kentucky Colonels Head to Game 3: Why This Isn't Your Headline

Had Louisville been picked instead of Oklahoma City as the city to replace Seattle, this whole state would be basketball crazy AGAIN, this time in June. Whether you were a Louisville fan, UK fan or Racer fan you would probably be rallying around this team led by Kevin Durant. We could be watching James and Wade put on memorable performances in the Yum! Center. We could have gotten to see players who played at the colleges we loved come back to play an NBA game. But were not and here's why:

 The entire state is what you would call a College Town. The state of Kentucky is all about the collegiate teams that make up the sports we care about. The NBA looks at how many season tickets they can sell and for the people in this state living close enough to want to buy season tickets and those who can afford season tickets are buying them for Louisville and Kentucky basketball and people are not about to give those up for an NBA team they hardly care about. I'm not saying no one would buy season tickets or that the place would be empty every night but David Stern and Co. probably looked at their competition and didn't want to take the chance. Meanwhile in Oklahoma, it kind of goes without saying that College basketball isn't even close to what it is here. Even when Blake Griffin had them ranked high there were still empty seats.

Although the city of Louisville struck out with the Sonics they still believe there is hope in one day getting a team. With the Sacramento Kings now looking for a new home, David Stern is back shopping for a new city. Here's where i will sound contradictory. I think this could actually work. Everyone says the games in OKC is like a college atmosphere and if anyone has ever been to Rupp, the Yum! Center or even the CFSB Center for a big game, then you know how loud it gets. Could you imagine if these passionate UK and UL fans took that passion for basketball and came together to root for one team?

 Louisville is the 27th biggest city in America (4 spots ahead of Oklahoma City), selling tickets to 41 home games could be challenging considering the price of admission to an NBA game but over time the team will begin to grow on the city and soon it will become a part of our lives. Over time it will grow on the state and people who have grown up fans of other teams who live close by and have never been able to see them play live will cherish the moments when they do play in the YUM! Center. It would be the only major professional team the entire state would have. Soon that place will be sold out on a daily basis and the roof may come off if they ever play in June. But as for now the closest thing we have to an NBA team is the developmental team   in Lexington.

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