Judge not saying how she would have ruled

Settlement of the Sonics lawsuit last week answered a lot of questions about Oklahoma's professional basketball future, but it left one big question unresolved.
By Randy Ellis Modified: July 8, 2008 at 12:31 am •  Published: July 8, 2008
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Settlement of the Sonics lawsuit last week answered a lot of questions about Oklahoma's professional basketball future, but it left one big question unresolved.

How would federal judge Marsha Pechman have ruled if the city of Seattle and Sonics owners had not settled the case out of court?

Would she have required the team to play two more years in Seattle to fulfill the terms of a lease? Or would she have allowed the owners to buy their way out of the lease because of the dysfunctional relationship between the landlord and tenant?

Tension built for weeks as members of the public discussed what impact such things as a "man possessed” e-mail and "poisoned well” strategy might have on the decision of a federal judge.

The stakes were high — an NBA team.

Then — on the very day the judge's decision was to be announced — a settlement was announced instead.

So, how would Judge Pechman have ruled? The Oklahoman left a voice mail on her answering machine last week in the hope that she would answer that question.

Monday she delivered a response through a law clerk.

"She is not going to reveal how she would have ruled,” the law clerk said.

A federal lawsuit, it seems, is like a game of poker.

If you want to see the cards, you have to play out the hand.


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Okies in Orlando
Other than the players on Oklahoma City's new NBA team, there are just a couple of players with ties to the state headed to the league's first summer league in Orlando.

Here's a look at this year's Okies in Orlando:

•JamesOn Curry, Bulls: After spending much of last season in the D-League, the former Oklahoma State guard will be trying to find a permanent spot on the Bulls' roster.

•Stephen Graham, Pacers: Graham played in 22 games with the Pacers last season. The former OSU player averaged four points and one rebound per game.

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