Sonics Trial Blog
Seattle Times reporters Percy Allen, Jim Brunner and Danny O'Neil are filing updates from the courthouse throughout the day.
July 2, 2008 6:00 AM
Posted by Jim Brunner
U.S. District Judge Marsha Pechman is scheduled to post her decision online at 4 p.m. today.
The city of Seattle filed the federal lawsuit to force the Sonics to play out the final two seasons on their lease KeyArena lease, through September 2010. Sonics owner Clay Bennett wants out now, and the NBA has approved the team's move to Oklahoma City. Bennett says a cash buyout of the lease should suffice. The city in February rejected a $26.5 million offer to let the Sonics go.
During the six-day trial that ended last Thursday, Seattle's lead attorney Paul Lawrence emphasized the city's right to enforce the lease, and the Sonics' unique role in the community and as a KeyArena tenant.
Brad Keller, the Sonics' lead attorney, focused heavily in his closing arguments on efforts by Seattle civic leaders, including former U.S. Sen. Slade Gorton, to use the lease lawsuit as part of broader scheme to pressure Bennett to sell the team.
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