by Lang Whitaker

QUOTES OF THE DAY
I blocked the shot and the ball went out to half court. My thumb pretty much did too.” — Brian Cook, on injuring his hand.

I would tell those guys that they’re lucky to be in a place like that because it’s really loyal fans there. People who are really warm and receptive to you and try to make you feel at home and really show their appreciation to you. You walk around, everybody speaks to you, and people there are very hospitable. Oklahoma City is a great place for a basketball team. They deserve to have their own sports franchise.” — Rasual Butler, Hornets guard, on what he would tell the Sonics players.

“When you put enough attorneys in a room, things go slow.” — Mark Warkentien, Muggets director of player personnel, on the delay in re-signing Nene.

“To me, Allen Iverson is one of the top five players in the game. Whenever you can add a top five player on your team, I think you’re going to improve. I mean, I admire him as a player. He’s a former MVP. He’s been the scoring champ. I just think that when great players get with other great players, they make adjustments. And if we were to add that, I think we both would make the adjustments to make it work.” — Paul Pierce, lobbyist.

THE LINKS…
• Of course, today’s big story is the Sonics being sold to a group from Oklahoma City. Lots of stories out there about this…
— Two Seattle columnists, here and here , try to out-mean each other in stories about Howard Schultz. Both of those columns are really good.

— Schultz paints a pretty bleak picture while explaining why he had to sell the team.

Rashard Lewis isn’t sure what to think, although maybe this explains with the Sonics weren’t negotiating with Chris Wilcox.

— The WNBA side of things.

— I kind of like the Mayor of OKC after reading that he spoke to the press while “sipping from a Route 44 Sonic drink.” Keeping it real!

— From Oklahoma, a hard-hitting column that notes “losing Chris Paul will stink.” Like, totally dude.

— Hornets owner George Shinn is acting like nothing has changed, saying the Hornets never had any long-term plans to stay in OKC. Yeah, right. Shinn also says that the same group of businessmen tried to buy the Hornets from him, but he wouldn’t sell.

— Canzano tells Portland fans not to worry too much about the Blazers being moved to Seattle once the Sonics are gone.

Detlef Schrempf hopes the Sonics stay in Seattle.

Paul Pierce says he’s ready for Iverson to come to Boston.

• Oh boy. After winning 64 games last season, Flip Saunders says it’s time for things to change in Detroit, including more zone defenses. Just don’t say we didn’t warn you, Pistons fans.

• Speaking of coaches, I was reading this article about the Bucks trading for Charlie Villanueva, thinking it sounds like a pretty good fit for them, then I got to the line with the worst words imaginable: “says coach Terry Stotts.”

• Knicks fans, your eBay moment has come.

• Some fans in Sacramento are upset about the prospects of a new arena being built. What I really loved in this story was finding out there’s an organization called The Gray Panthers, which is a senior adult advocacy group. That’s the best name ever.

• More free money: The Suns have signed Marcus Banks for four years, $21 million.

Nene still hasn’t re-upped with the Nuggets, but all sides say don’t worry.

• The Louis Williams hype continues to build.

Phil Jackson is re-assembling his former staff out in L.A.

• Old School Alert: Catching up with Jay Humphries.