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Barry Ackerley, Sonics owner during ‘80s and ‘90s, dies

Mar 22, 2011, 2:48 PM EDT

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Barry Ackerley, the man who owned the Seattle Super Sonics during most of the 1980s and 1990s and saw his teams be consistent winners and make it to the NBA finals, has died.

Ackerley, 76, passed away from a stroke in his Southern California home, the Sporting News reports.

Ackerley owned the Sonics for 18 years and saw his team make the playoffs 13 of those years and the NBA finals once (only to run into Michael Jordan’s Bulls).

In 2001 Ackerley sold the team to Starbucks man Howard Shultz, who turned around five years later and sold the team to Clay Bennett, who moved the team to Oklahoma City.

Our condolences go out to the Ackerley family.

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