Skip to main content

“I lost that series on a technicality.”


The Sonics are an iconic franchise because of two things: their team in the 90s with Gary Payton, Shawn Kemp, and Detlef Schrempf and the way the team was moved to Oklahoma City. From the moment Seattle lost its team the NBA community and fans are hoping the Sonics will reemerge.

Their best season in franchise history was in 1996. This was their year. They lost in the Western Conference Finals in 1993 against the Suns. The next two years they had two first-round exits, including the shocking loss to the 8th seed Denver Nuggets. They took the league by storm in '96 with a franchise-record 64 wins, hungry to finally win it all. Their coach believes one little detail lost them the Finals against the Chicago Bulls.

"I lost that series on a technicality. Our second game in the series was in Chicago. It was a night game, it started late. It was an NBA game, it was long. We played well, but we didn't play well enough to win, and we lost. For some reason, I decided to fly home after the game. In my opinion, that cost us the series." 

George Karl, The Ringer

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

Coach Karl continues to explain how they had some flight issues, had to stop in Montana to refuel and they arrived in Seattle around 5 am. That completely messed up the team's sleep pattern and the next game was Sunday at noon. The Sonics looked tired and flat in that game, and Karl sees his decision as the cause of that.

There is a small detail of Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman and Toni Kukoč on the other side of the court, finishing up a 72 win season. But, this isn't the first time a coach or a player is convinced one random decision swung a series. George Karl blames a flight.

Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler during media day

Is Jimmy Butler the ultimate troll or a business guru?

With Jimmy Butler moving towards the latter half of his career, it seems that he wants to start building his off-court brand.

Charles Barkley and Michael Jordan on Oprah Show

“He never understand what it takes to be a winner” — When Michael Jordan humiliated Charles Barkley on Oprah

It’s hard to tell if Jordan took Barkley’s joke personally, but what he said next changed the vibe and the entire atmosphere in a few seconds.

Chicago Bulls forward DeMar DeRozan

"I don't think I could truly be happy until I retire" - DeMar DeRozan pulls the curtain back on daily rigors of NBA life

There's one thing Chicago Bulls star DeMar DeRozan is looking forward to the most when he hangs up his sneakers for good.

Venus Williams and Shaquille O'Neal

When Shaquille O'Neal lied about having affairs with Venus Williams, Cindy Crawford, and Aaliyah

Venus Williams issued a strong statement upon hearing Shaquille O'Neal's claims.

Chicago Bulls guard Michael Jordan is defended by Detroit Pistons center James Edwards

“The Bulls complained all the time” — Kevin McHale reveals why the Detroit “Bad Boys” Pistons hated the Chicago Bulls

Unlike Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls, Kevin McHale believes the physicality the Bad Boy Pistons played with was valid and it made his Celtics even better.

Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant and guard Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook still does the same offseason workout he and Kevin Durant used to do in OKC — “It definitely helps”

Russell Westbrook revealed that he has been running on sand dunes for about eight years now every offseason and it has been helping him a lot.

New Orleans Hornets center Chris Kaman

How Chris Kaman got Player Exclusive "Air Sasqhatuces" from Nike in 2012

After he became an All-Star in 2010, Chris Kaman triggered a clause in his Nike deal that he’d get Player Exclusives