Lowell Cohn: Warriors don't need a new San Francisco arena (w/video)

  • This artist's rendering provided by the Golden State Warriors shows the interior of their new waterfront basketball arena in San Francisco. The Warriors unveiled plans Tuesday to build an arena at Piers 30-32. The waterfront site near the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge is just blocks from the San Francisco Giants' ballpark and the downtown financial district. The arena is expected to be completed by 2017. (AP Photo/Golden State Warriors)

The 49ers played in the same dump as the Giants and they needed a new place and eventually got one — although I can't help wishing their new place was in San Francisco. Never mind.

So far the operative word is "need."

The A's need a new place — they'll probably have to work that out with the Giants. And the Raiders need a new place. We all know that. We get it. Candlestick wasn't suitable and the Oakland Coliseum is a dump with plumbing problems.

But this Warriors' thing is entirely different. Show us the need. Please show us the need. Oracle Arena already was made over once. It's an admirable place. Has luxury boxes. Has great sight lines. The Warriors have sold out 61 games in a row. On their website they invite fans to buy tickets and be part of the 62nd consecutive sellout tonight. Please check it out. The Warriors are a smashing success in Oakland.

For this, the Warriors need a new arena?

It's easy to reach Oracle Arena. It's right next to Highway 880 and the parking lots are vast. BART takes riders right to the arena. This is a dream scenario.

Plus the Warriors have one heck of a practice facility in downtown Oakland — right on top of the convention center. I know about the practice facility because I've been there a million times. It is big and comfortable and has every amenity for the players.

So there is no "need" in the Warriors alleged need for a new venue.

I'll tell you what there is — greed and vanity.

From the moment Joe Lacob and Peter Guber bought the Warriors, they've exhibited an extreme case of San Francisco envy. You feel sorry for those guys and wish they would seek appropriate psychotherapy. When they bought the team, they announced their new ownership in San Francisco. When they hired coach Mark Jackson, they introduced him in San Francisco. They kept running to San Francisco on the slightest pretext. It was kind of comical, this Oakland team being San Francisco obsessed. (Note: I live in Oakland. Factor that into your response to my column.)

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