Orlando Magic rookie Paolo Banchero was born and raised in Seattle. The highly-touted rookie went to O’Dea High School in the First Hill neighborhood in the city. Needless to say, this young man holds Seattle in a special place in his heart.

This is exactly why it isn’t surprising that Banchero is of the strong belief that the NBA should expand into his city. It’s been many years since Seattle had its own team in the league, and the 19-year-old thinks that now is the time (h/t Bill DiFilippo of Uproxx):

“I think it needs to happen, I think it should be mandatory,” Banchero said. “Not just because I’m biased, but because it’d be a great look on the NBA. It’s a great city, the fans there are crazy. If you get a team in Seattle, they’ll automatically be a top … not the top, but a top fanbase. Those games would be sold out right away.”

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I see no lies here. Seattle is a very passionate city and there’s little doubt that an NBA team would garner tremendous support from the local fanbase.

The last time Seattle had an NBA team was in 2008. This was before the Seattle SuperSonics transferred to OKC to become the Oklahoma City Thunder. There has been a lot of talk about the NBA expanding back into Seattle, but at this point, there hasn’t been significant traction in that regard.

Paolo Banchero was born in 2002, and he was just six when the Sonics left the city. It’s due time that he and the rest of the city get to support another Seattle team in the NBA.