“This thing is going to take off. It’s going to happen.” That’s what David Vahey says his business partner, Ian Bolyard told him just a few short days ago. Watching the trends on Twitter, Bolyard, who runs an online tee shirt business with Vahey, was sure that Seattle was going to once again have an NBA team.

For Bolyard, Vahey says, this was exciting. Growing up “in the I-5 rivalry” he says, “Ian took in all the Sonics games with his dad. And he wants his kids to have those same memories.” Bolyard set to work designing the Sonics Fever tee shirt.

And sure enough, on January 21, the league confirmed that an agreement had been made between the Maloofs and Chris Hansen’s investment group to send the Sacramento Kings to Seattle.

Suddenly, folks started to take note of their website, www.SonicsFever.com. (You can see Bolyard and Vahey on the web page):

Sonics fans from all over were finding the website, and the orders have been pouring in. “In the last day, we have had five stores want to sell the tee shirts,” says Vahey. “In fact, former Sonic Shawn Kemp has contacted us and wants to sell the shirts at his restaurant, Oskar’s Kitchen. So I’m driving some shirts up there.”

The two guys started their tee shirt business three years ago, printing shirts for non-profits from Vahey’s garage. Vahey, a father of three, says it’s humbling. “There’s nothing new about tee shirts,” he says. “There’s lots of merchandise out there. This is just a huge blessing.”

The tee shirts are selling for $9.99, and Vahey says the most popular shirt is the Gold on Green “We’re Back” tee (pictured).

With five extra guys helping to print tee-shirts, Vahey says there’s not much elbow room in his house, but he’s not complaining. “I played intramural basketball in college, and Ian played in high school. It’s just so great to be a part of something that everyone in Seattle is excited about.”

You can purchase your Sonics tee shirt online at www.SonicsFever.com.

— written by Tama Fulton, CBS Local Seattle


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