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Report: Warriors Reach Deal for New Arena in SF

The Warriors didn’t confirm or deny reports they have agreed to a deal for a new arena inSan Franciscoin 2017. Instead, Warriors co-owner Joe Lacob—and team spokesman Raymond Ridder—settled for an ambiguous statement:

“We are not prepared to make any announcements at this time.”

But Sunday, Mercury News fan blogger Adam Lauridsen broke the news Golden State agreed to build a fancy, new, privately funded arena on Piers 30 and 32 on the Embarcadero. Of course, in the past, the standard company line was they’re doing their due diligence as they search for a new home. But in light of the latest news, the company line has changed, suggesting an announcement is pending but they are not “prepared” to make it.

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The Warriors, according to league sources, had preliminary discussions with the San Francisco Giants. But those discussions didn’t pan out as, according to one source, the two sides clashed over how much control the Giants would have.

The Warriors could still end up part of the $1.6 billion Mission Rock project, which was unveiled April 4. The 27-acre plan—which will develop the land south of AT&T Park—isn’t scheduled to break ground for three years. Plus, the aforementioned site on The Embarcadero, isn’t without issues. Parking for a new arena there would be scarce, not to mention the potential traffic headache could be enough to scare off the city officials who would have to approve the plans.

One source with periphery knowledge of the negotiations said don’t be surprised if the Warriors agreed to the deal for an arena on Piers 30 and 32 as a message to the Giants. With years worth of bureaucracy awaiting both projects, plenty time exists for the two sides to work on a deal and change directions.

Either way, all signs point to the Warriors leaving Oakland for the financially greener pastures of San Francisco. Many would say this is the direction Golden State has been headed since Lacob and Peter Guber bought the franchise. That theory was fueled, if not sparked, by three major press conferences held in San Francisco: Lacob and Guber’s introduction as owners, and the introductions of executive board member Jerry West and head coach Mark Jackson.

This paper learned Lacob met with San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee on May 11 and presented a letter signed by city supervisors, business leaders and state representatives. The letter expressed the city’s hopes for the Warriors to build a “state-of-the-art sports and entertainment facility.”

The Warriors moved from San Francisco to Oakland in 1971. But now Golden State plays in the NBA’s oldest arena. Plus the corporate dollars awaiting the franchise in the West Bay look especially good for a group of owners looking to profit on their $450 million investment. A new arena with luxury suites, which is all but a requirement in modern stadiums, figure to be much more likely to sell in San Francisco.

Marcus Thompson

  • john

    This is good news……

  • Bane

    #ISupportThis

  • http://localhouseinfo.com Jonathan Fleming

    Too bad for my hometown Oakland….however if SF is stepping up, I have no problem heading to SF to see my team. I just wish Oakland could make a move….city needs leadership!

  • jeg

    Great….a bunch a of fake fairweathered fans in SF. Lacob, thanks for the slap in the face. If the Clippers cannot sign anyone and they play in the same arena as the lakers, what makes Lacob think it will work in SF? The reality is…..players don’t care for Norcal, it’s not “sexy” enough.

  • Yoda

    Great move. It’s not like all Warriors fans live in Oakland and won’t leave the city limits.

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  • John Michaels

    # 4, I agree with you completely.

    Even though the team has been terrible since Baron Davis left, the Oakland fans have still filled up the building year after year. And Oakland fans are passionate. They are knowledgeable and know when to cheer. San Francisco fans would, honestly, spend most of their time at the game checking their cell phones.

    And what about history? Our building is the oldest in the NBA, older than MSG in NY. There’s a lot of history in that, from Rick Barry and the championship season, to the Sleepy Floyd game, to Chris Mullin and the TMC years, to the We Believe run in 2007, that was all as the “Golden State” Warriors not “San Francisco” Warriors. That means something.

    And is moving to SF really going to attract more free agents? In 2007, before he got trade to Boston, Kevin Garnett was open to a trade to Oakland. Why? Because we were winning back then. Winning attracts free agents, not the actual city. How many big free agents are the Brooklyn Nets attracting? Exactly.

  • John Michaels

    From Yahoo! Sports:

    The downside is that it would change the Warriors’ fan culture significantly. For many years, observers around the league have praised the team’s Oakland crowds for their devotion, passion, and knowledge of the game. At times, they get a little out of control, like when fans booed Lacob (perhaps rightfully) during Chris Mullin’s jersey retirement this March. Yet playing in Oakland makes Warriors games an experience that few arenas around the league can recreate. Regular season games are raucous; when the team is actually good, as they were during the 2007 “We Believe” run, Oracle Arena becomes one of the most feared venues in the NBA.

    Moving to San Francisco would change that. Games would become much more accessible for casual fans able to afford them, and corporations would have plenty of reasons to buy up seats to entertain clients and reward employees. Fans would cheer for the team, to be sure, but not to the same degree as in Oakland. As a point of comparison, something very similar happened when the Giants moved from the dilapidated Candlestick Park — many diehards still attended, but the less invested fans began to overwhelm them.

  • Fire Bob Fitzgerald

    “[T]he West Bay”? What a petty little turn of phrase from MT.

    Moving the team back to San Francisco makes good sense on all levels. I’ve had season tickets to the Warriors in the past and will again if the Warriors and San Francisco come through with a new arena.

  • John Starks

    Thanks for supporting us, Oakland, for all of these years. Thanks for self-generating enough civic pride to keep fans showing up and spending money to support these losers. If it weren’t for you moeny-spending idiots, we would have left long ago. Oakland just isn’t a sexy name, despite your efforts to change it.

    We appreciate all of the time and money you’ve spent, but we’re all going somewhere that is nicer and where we can make a lot more money. After all, we are rich and would never spend our time and money in Oakland, so we’re glad you did. Now, we’ll take all of the money you’ve given us over the yearas and put it somewhere that it’s not necessarily needed, but makes us feel better about investing our money.

    So long, suckers.

    Best regards,

    The A’s, Raider and Warriors.

  • GSWlifer

    Not a fan of this move. You can kiss the greatest arena atmosphere in all of the NBA goodbye. I completely understand why the team wants to move to SF, but the one advantage we had in games was our great home crowd. I don’t know if you’re going to get that in SF when half of the crowd will be filled in with corporate attendees or people just looking to do something fun in the city.

  • http://www.trappedingoldenstate.com/ Trapped in Golden State

    If you build it we will come!

  • Golden State Yuppies

    Get ready for watered-down, cosmopolitan, no-nothing fare-weather fans…

    Way to piss away the most rabid, loyal fanbase in the country….San Francisco is a Giants/Niners town — not a basketball city.

    The East Bay is the Bay Area’s basketball mecca and has produced Hall of Famers like Jason Kidd, Gary Payton, Paul Salis, Bill Russell — as well as Damien Lillard (Oakland Highschool) who is projected to be picked around #10 in this years NBA draft…

    In Oakland they had awful basketball and great fans — in SF they will have great basketball and awful fans.

  • Grey Warden

    #9 Trapped,

    So you’re saying they don’t go to the current arena, which is almost always packed every game?

  • http://www.trappedingoldenstate.com/ Trapped in Golden State

    #10

    I go as much as anyone…I’m saying if they build a world class venue that this team (and fanbase) deserve it will be full every night…they were moving after 2016 anyway and I was one of the only ones advocating that they build in the Jack London area http://www.trappedingoldenstate.com/2012/04/moving-day-coming-for-golden-state.html
    because I love Oakland and hate that they will lose all their teams…now that it’s official I’m ready to rock the new building wherever it goes up…

    I worry about the fair weather and corporate fans as much as anyone else because my entire site is dedicated to the hardcore Warrior fans but I have faith that the faithful will still be out in force…the warriors fanbase is kind of like madison square garden, no matter how expensive it gets there are enough hardcore fans that will make it work

  • Darren

    #8 “Great home crowd” unless the Lakers were in town. Too many LA transplants here in the Bay.

    As a Peninsula resident, I’m obviously in favor of the Warriors moving to SF, but I just don’t see how they can build an Arena *AND* parking on those piers. I attended a couple Pro Beach Volleyball tournaments there (and the X Games a long time ago) and the site was barely big enough for those events. Also, isn’t it going to cost $100 millions just to shore up the foundations of those piers, which is why Ellison’s America’s Cup team decided to move some of their plans further south?

  • Young

    Arenas don’t matter in baskeball. Just Baseball and football.

    Oracle was fine to me…just give me a better team

  • Stan

    It wont affect the fans..they play indoors so the crappy SF weather in winter and spring isn’t a factor. Its gotta hurt the city of Oakland’s revenue..20,000 people must spend quite a bit of coin around the Stadium.
    This whole thing of let Oakland rot by Fisher and Beane is so evil.
    I saw a true program on a Detroit man starting some Internet success in that city..and he chose a rundown ghetto. He wanted to give back to the community (And we all know Beane and Fisher are takers) rebuild the city’s infrastructure.
    Well,that area of Detroit now has been raised,buildings filled with other new company’s that have moved in because of the cost being a great value.
    I’ve said that for years..John Fisher and Joe Lacob could team up and revitalize Oakland..except for the fact that they don’t give a damn that is.

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  • deano

    Nobody going to Warriors games spends money in Oakland. You cannot walk from Oracle to anything but your car or BART. Once you are in your car or on BART, you’re gone from Oakland, unless you live in Oakland. In that case, you’re still going home just like everybody else. It’s an in-and-out evening of basketball. Oakland will lose nothing more than what it will lose from GSW.

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  • dknight007

    What a slap in the face to the REAL hardcore W’s fans that are located in the East Bay.

    This says it all that Lacob is trying to cater to the big elite evil corporations and the 1%:

    San Francisco is considered a more lucrative sports market and a waterfront arena would likely increase the Warriors value by tens of millions of dollars, said sports economist Andrew Zimbalist.

    “It has more large corporations; it has more high-income people; it has a larger population base to draw from; and it potentially incorporates the market in San Jose,” he said.

    Either way, the Warriors willingness to leave is “a slap in the face,” said Chris Dobbins, founder of Save Oakland Sports and a member of the Coliseum authority, which oversees the municipally-owned complex.

    “We’re very upset,” Dobbins

  • dknight007

    If they name the team San Francisco Warriors that will be even more of slap in the face. Expect attendance to not be the same as it was in Oakland, especially if the team continues to SUCK!

    An Arena near the Pier 30-32 site would cause terrible congestion and public transportation would be nightmare as well.

  • dknight007

    The fair weather corporate elite and 1% that Lacob is catering to will not support this team through thick and thin, especially when they continue to suck, like how the team was supported at Oracle Arena, when they have sucked for so long.

  • John Starks

    @Trapped In Golden State #15 – Just read your article, man. A+. Sorry I didn’t catch that before.

  • dknight.007

    What a slap in the face to the REAL hardcore W’s fans that are located in the East Bay.

    This says it all that Lacob is trying to cater to the big elite evil corporations and the 1%:

    San Francisco is considered a more lucrative sports market and a waterfront arena would likely increase the Warriors value by tens of millions of dollars, said sports economist Andrew Zimbalist.

    “It has more large corporations; it has more high-income people; it has a larger population base to draw from; and it potentially incorporates the market in San Jose,” he said.

    Either way, the Warriors willingness to leave is “a slap in the face,” said Chris Dobbins, founder of Save Oakland Sports and a member of the Coliseum authority, which oversees the municipally-owned complex.

    “We’re very upset,” Dobbins said.

    If they name the team San Francisco Warriors that will be even more of slap in the face. Expect attendance to not be the same as it was in Oakland, especially if the team continues to SUCK!

    An Arena near the Pier 30-32 site would cause terrible congestion and public transportation would be nightmare as well.

    The fair weather corporate elite and 1% that Lacob is catering to will not support this team through thick and thin, especially when they continue to suck, like how the team was supported at Oracle Arena, when they have sucked for so long.

    Th real hard core East Bay fans who have night in and night out sold out Oracle after 18 years of consistent should stop showing up next year after this clown Lacon slaps them in the face tomorrow and tells them he wants to go to SF.

    Going to SF isn’t going to bring high priced free agents to play with the W’s…being a good consistent winning hoops team is what attracts free agents!

  • ga’s

    Sheesh…Its not like the GSWarriors are moving to Santa Clara, like the 49ers. The Warriors will be a 10 minute ride across the Bay Bridge, and faster by BART.