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Mike Salk: Seattle sports fans need to stop letting arena debate divide them

The debate over whether Seattle should build a new arena in the SoDo neighborhood or at Seattle Center rages on, even a month after the Seattle Mayor Ed Murray chose the Oak View Group to head up a KeyArena renovation. Mike Salk has had enough of it, saying it’s getting in the way of the common goal of the two proposals: bringing NBA and NHL teams to Seattle for the sports community to support.

“I will stand up and cheer if SoDo gets done, and I will stand up and cheer if Seattle Center gets done, and I’m not going to allow a couple of people who have been pot-committed to one proposal or the other to convince us that this thing is meant to divide us,” Salk said on “Brock and Salk” Monday morning. “Stop buying into the divisiveness of it. Come together. Realize that we the sports fans should all be on the same page on this. I continue to be shocked that we divide ourselves as a sports fan community instead of saying, alright, whichever project you want, let’s go.”

A common argument against the KeyArena renovation has been that it will create traffic problems around the area, but Salk doesn’t see that as reason enough to stand in the way of a potential home for a new pro sports franchise being built.

“If you can’t handle sitting in an extra 10 minutes of traffic a couple times a year, then you’re not that big of a sports fan. That shouldn’t be the make-or-break of this,” he said. “The goal is to have teams in town. And yeah, KeyArena might have more traffic or maybe this one will have less, and I see pluses and minuses to both proposals, and I like them both. … We go to games with 60,000 other people. There’s gonna be traffic. We suck it up and deal with it. Is it great? No. Is it a means to an end of watching our favorite teams play? Yes.

“… We’re allowing ourselves to get caught up in the fight against each other instead of simply the fight for the same thing.”

You can watch the entire “Brock and Salk” segment in the video above.