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April 19, 2008 10:00 PM
Posted by Percy Allen
Just combining through notes, transcripts and all of the stories from Friday's NBA Board of Governors meeting when I was reminded about this comical exchange between Commissioner David Stern and KING-TV reporter Chris Daniels.
Stern sometimes refers to himself in the third person as "Easy Dave," but Daniels clearly got under his skin with a tough line of questioning. It reminded me of the Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson scene in the film "A Few Good Men."
Anyway, here's the transcript.
Chris Daniels: "For all of the fans back in Seattle who are watching this live right now, what do you want to say to them, to the fans who have supported the Supersonics franchise in Seattle for 41 years, and let's settle it once and for all with Key Arena, there is a $300 million propose all out will; is that a significant proposal and could that solve the problem?"
Commissioner David Stern: "Actually there's no proposal out there right now, and I don't think you would mean to misrepresent that to me, would you?"
Daniels: "The $300 million proposal that the state legislature did not want to get involved in and they talked about getting involved in January."
Stern: "That would be the fourth that would be the fourth I'll let you finish. Go ahead."
Daniels: "The Key Arena remodel plan that's out there is a viable proposal."
Stern: "The Key Arena model has been available for four years, and never been acted upon by anybody. So I would say to the fans of Seattle, we very much appreciate your support. We think you have a great city. We think King County is great and we think that Washington is great and we are very sad that the absence of a first class facility, or even a funded, voted upon plan for one wasn't able to be put together by whoever's responsibility it is, collectively for this day now to occur."
Then later in the interview Daniels hammers into Stern for the last time.
Daniels: "There's been so much discussion about good faith and best efforts between Mr. Bennett and his group and the City of Seattle and you believe he was acting in good faith over those negotiations, but over the last week there have been several e mails, including an exchange between you and Mr. Bennett and e mails between Mr. Bennett and his have you had a chance to read through those?"
Stern: "My response, as I have been reminded, wasn't lengthy at all. So your predicate is ..."
Daniels: "Have you read through those e mails?"
Daniels: "Especially between Mr. Bennett and ..."
Stern: "Live or not, I don't like to be interrupted, and I'm not going to interrupt you. So why don't we just go to the next question."
That was really priceless. I've attended quite a few Stern press conference and he rarely gets upset likes this. He took a somber tone on Friday - perhaps aware of the pain he was causing so many NBA fans in Seattle - but he also displayed that dry sense of humor that often gets characterized as smugness.
When asked: "Would Key Arena, if that proposal ever finds the funding for it it's been talked about for several years, but would it be something that would be viable for an NBA arena in the future?
Stern replied: "I'm not going to talk about how many angels you can fit upon the head of a pin ..." when a simply "I'm not going to speculate on that" would have served the purpose.
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