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Russell Wilson joins SoDo Group

Russell Wilson…yes Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, has joined the Hansen Group in pursuit of the Arena in Sodo.

Yesterday afternoon, Wilson announced it in twitter.

Chris Daniels quickly followed the announcement with a story on King5.

So what?

Other than being a wonderful personality that is loved by everyone in this city, this really has no direct impact on Seattle’s chances of getting either an NHL or NBA team. Indirectly, it is very likely this will put further pressure on the Seattle City Council to approve the Occidental street vacation to green light the SoDo arena plan. It could also deter AEG and Oak View Group from responding to the KeyArena RFP with a proposal that would accommodate an NHL and NBA team. If it were to ever be approved, an NHL/NBA solution at KeyArena is being estimated at 5 to 10 years down the road while the SoDo arena could begin construction within 6 months of getting the street vacated.

Wilson is an outstanding human being and it would be great to have in as part of any Pro Sports ownership group in Seattle. It should be noted that the Hansen-Wilson-Nordstrom SoDo group, still remains focused on NBA. They are very open to the NHL but will more than likely need an passionate NHL dancing partner that is willing to pitch in for the building and bring an NHL team here. Time will tell on how this shakes out but this certainly should be viewed as a positive for the SoDo arena efforts.

Players’ Tribune

Wilson wrote an article for the Players Tribune on why bring the Sonics back and the NHL to Seattle is important to him. One thing that struck a cord with me was this:

We live in divisive times, and sports have a way of bringing people closer together. They allow us all — children and adults — to use our imaginations and dream. I want kids in Seattle to grow up dreaming of playing basketball or hockey for their hometown team.

Not to get political, but at a time when the country seems to be more divided then ever, playing and cheering for sports has a way to bring us together and build long and trusting relationships with people of diverse backgrounds.

John Barr
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