Hello everyone. My name is Ernesto J. Ruiz and I am one of the staff writers for Sports Blog Nation's Denver Broncos' blog: Mile High Report. Over the past few years, I've tried to get into the NBA (as a fan, of course) and I came to the conclusion that the only way to truly accomplish that was to commit to a team. I'm not bound to my chosen teams by geography or heritage (I'm Puerto Rican, grew up in Costa Rica and spent only a few years in the continental U.S. for school in New Jersey and Florida) so I consider myself a true "free agent" fan. At this point, I'm leaning towards rooting for the Oklahoma City Thunder and I'm reaching out to you guys for that final push off the proverbial fence.
What I wanted from my future NBA franchise were three things: solid ownership/management, a lack of championship tradition and a likable young star/core who was committed to staying put.
Though I dislike the fact that Clay Bennett's ownership group took the Sonics out of Seattle, I like that he moved the team to his home and a relatively small market that was otherwise lacking in professional sports; General Manager Sam Presti has done an amazing job of building an incredibly talented, synergistic young squad with few if any misses in personnel decisions. I'd say that, in sum total, ownership/management in a plus for this franchise.
Despite the Sonics winning the 1979 NBA Championship, having other spikes in playoff performance and being generally solid throughout their time there, they certainly don't fit the mold of the Boston Celtics, Los Angeles Lakers, Chicago Bulls or any of the other national and international fan-bases built on history. I don't believe that anyone rooting for the Sonics/Thunder can be seen as a bandwagon jumper, even today with their current rise to playoff contention.
Finally, the juxtaposition of Kevin Durant's handling of his contract extension with the LeBron James debacle pushed me even further into the camp that believes that KD is the next true great. He's one of only a handful of legitimate superstars in the Association today and the only one that doesn't have a blotch on his reputation for off-court issues. Durant alone, however, would not be enough to lure me in. Jeff Green and Russell Westbrook guarantee that Kevin doesn't have to go it alone. I liked Westbrook from his Bruins' days and Green, whose Hoyas I've always liked, has grown on me.
Well, as you can see, the OKC Thunder meet my standards just fine. That said, I'd like to hear from you for that final little nudge I need to try them out as my NBA team. Fill in the blanks for me. Let me know more about the other players on the roster (especially the other starters and contributors) and tell me about anything else that I should know. Heck, tell me all about this site, while you're at it! Regardless of what I end up doing, I want you guys to know that I like your team and wish them well in the future. It's a solid franchise, with good people at the helm and solid, likable players on the court. Good luck and thanks for helping this fan find an NBA home!