Homes of the Sonics
Where the Sonics played through the years.
Seattle Center Coliseum
The Sonics' first home was built in 1962 for the World's Fair. It was called the Washington State Pavilion then, and was host to displays of what life would be like in the 21st century. After the fair, the building was remodeled as a basketball arena and opened as the Seattle Center Coliseum in 1964.
The Sonics played their first 11 seasons there, then after seven years at the Kingdome, returned for nine more years. Capacity for the Coliseum was listed as 12,595 for 1967-68, and the Sonics averaged 6,186 their first season.
The Sonics played a couple of playoff games at the Kingdome in 1978, then moved there on a permanent basis for the 1978-79 season.
They played for seven seasons at the Kingdome, breaking NBA attendance records in the beginning, but seeing crowds drop toward the end of their run there. The Sonics played a few games at the dome in the 1988-89, 1991-92 and 1992-93 seasons.
The biggest crowd in Sonics history is 40,172 for a playoff game at the Kingdome in 1980.
The Tacoma Dome, which had just opened, hosted four Sonics games during the 1983-84 season, then three more during the 1990-91 season. After the Sonics decided the Coliseum needed work after the 1994 season, the Tacoma Dome became their home for the '94-95 season.
The Coliseum got a $100 million-plus remodel, opening in October 1995 as KeyArena (first Sonics game Nov. 4), with the court located 35 feet below street level to accommodate more fans. Capacity at the Key is 17,072.
1971, 1980, 1987
The University of Washington's campus arena was the site for six games during the 1970-71 season (plus two games during the 1987 playoffs and two games during the 1980 playoffs).
The Kingdome was booked in 1980 with the Mariners, and both the Coliseum and Kingdome were booked in late April 1987.
In 1980, the Sonics lost both playoff games to the Lakers in Hec Ed, then lost the next game in Los Angeles to bow out of the Western Conference Finals, 4 games to 1.
In 1987. the Sonics beat Dallas twice at Hec Ed, advancing to the conference semifinals.
1967-68: Three games were played in Portland, three in Tacoma, and one each in Spokane, Olympia and Vancouver, B.C. 1968-69: Four games in Vancouver, B.C., one in Tacoma. 1969-70: Three games in Portland, and one each in Eugene, Ore., and Vancouver, B.C. 1970-71: Six games at Edmundson Pavilion. 1971-72: One game in Portland. 1983-84: Four games at the Tacoma Dome. 1988-89: Two games at the Kingdome. 1990-91: Three games at the Tacoma Dome. 1991-92: Four games at the Kingdome. 1992-93: Four games at the Kingdome.
Information in this article, originally published July 10, 2008, was corrected July 15, 2008. A previous version of this story omitted two playoff games against the Lakers in 1980 in Edmundson Pavilion from a chart that reviewed all the homes of the Sonics over the franchise's 41 years.
Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company
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