Monday, December 1, 2008

Oklahoma City Wants To Return Thunder To Seattle, But Is Still Looking For Receipt

Oklahoma City, OK. (Dec. 1) - Struck by a nasty case of buyer's remorse, the city of Oklahoma City wants to return the NBA's Thunder back to Seattle, but as of this morning hadn't located the receipt the league says is necessary to complete such a transaction.

"No ticky, no washy. That's pretty much what the league is telling us," said Oklahoma City councilperson Renee Wilgard yesterday. "The season is less than sixty days old, so we're still within the window of returns. But if we don't find the receipt, all [the NBA] will give us is league credit."

The Thunder, formerly the Seattle Supersonics, are 2-16 and only Saturday broke a 14-game losing streak.

"They (the NBA) said we could return the Thunder within 60 days," Wilgard said, "but that we would need the receipt. Well, you can't keep EVERY receipt you get! I hope to talk to the manager."

NBA spokesman Frank Meagher said that the league will "cheerfully refund" Oklahoma City's $45.4 million relocation fee, but that without a receipt, "our hands are tied."

"The city is entitled to league credit for 180 days," Meagher explained. "Meaning that they could spend the money elsewhere within the league. But a cash refund is impossible without that receipt."

Wilgard said she "thinks" fellow councilperson Andrew Schmidt "put the receipt in his glove box", but that hasn't been confirmed.

"Maybe Andy still has it in there. Or possibly (city treasurer) Cindy (Kohn) might have it. She's pretty good about that kind of stuff," Wilgard said.

Meagher said several NBA employees have verified that when the deal was consummated, a hand written receipt was slipped inside a bag of complimentary NBA souvenirs that was given to Schmidt at the time of the transaction. Also, Meagher said, a more "official" receipt -- "printed from a computer and everything," was mailed to city hall the next day.

Wilgard thinks that the league should soften their return policy in this situation.

"We've spent quite a bit of money with them," she said. "And we're honest people. It's not like we just tried the Thunder out to impress people then want to return them."

Meagher says if the league bends its rules here, everyone will want to do it. He added that the NBA is "still going round and round" with the New York Knicks about returning Stephon Marbury.

Wilgard says she might try to say that the Thunder were already broken, to defeat the return policy.

"We could always just say that they were like this when we got them," she said. "But like I say, we're honest people. I wish they would just make this one exception."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

this hasnt been heard anywhere else not on espn, not i then okc newspapers, not on our local news. where do you come up with this crap that you continuely write about?