The Seattle Super Sonics, who arrived into the National Basketball Association as an expansion team in 1969, won an NBA title in 1979 and have made three appearances in the NBA finals (1978, 1979, and 1996). The Supersonics, who currently play their home games at Key Arena, which is located in Seattle, Washington, are led by superstar Ray Allen, who was acquired in 2003 in a trade for the 13 year veteran Gary Payton, who was shipped to Milwaukee.
At the time, Ronald "Skip" Murray, who was included in the deal, was considered to be a throw-in who would soon be cut. However, Murray managed to stick with the team and opened the 2003-2004 season on a tear and was leading the N.B.A. in scoring after the first couple of weeks. The 2003-2004 Supersonics team is led by both Payton and Murray, as well as Brent Barry, who won the Slam Dunk Contest in 1996, and Rashard Lewis, who went straight from high school to the National Basketball Association in 1998 and became the youngest player in Supersonics history to start a game.
Although the Super Sonics 2003 first round draft pick Nick Collison is out for the entire 2003-2004 season with an injured shoulder, the Sonics expect Collison to be a fixture in the starting lineup for years to come. The Sonics will need strong efforts from Allen, Murray, Barry, Lewis, and Collison to achieve the success that the Sonics experienced in the late 1970's when they made two consecutive appearances in the NBA Finals, in the early 1980's when they were coached by the winningest coach in NBA history Lenny Wilkens, and in the mid 1980's; when they were led by Dale Ellis, Xavier McDonald, and 1987 All-Star Game MVP Tom Chambers.
The Seattle Supersonics are coached by former Supersonic guard Nate McMillan, who spent his entire 12 year career with the team and left as the franchise's all-time leader in steals and assists, and whose jersey is now retired and hangs from the banners of Key Arena. Another assistant coach is Jack Sikma, who was a member of the 1979 championship team and who also has his jersey retired by the franchise.
The Seattle Supersonics' rivals are their Pacific Northwest neighbors, the Portland Trailblazers, who also compete in the Western Conference Midwest Division. Although Seattle does not have a major league hockey team, be sure to purchase tickets to watch the city's Major League Baseball team (Seattle Mariners) and National Football League team (Seattle Seahawks). Alternatively, another option is to purchase tickets to watch the University of Washington Huskies basketball and football teams compete in the NCAA Division I-A. Note: The SuperSonics are commonly misspelled as two words, the Super Sonics.
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