Microsoft Co-Founder, Seahawks and Blazers Owner Paul Allen Dies
On Monday, Microsoft Co-Founder and the owner of both the Seattle Seahawks and the Portland Trail Blazers Paul Allen died from complications of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Allen was 65 years old. In the beginning of October, Allen stated that the disease had returned as he made the following comments:
“I’ve begun treatment & my doctors are optimistic that I will see a good result. Appreciate the support I’ve received & count on it as I fight this challenge.”
Allen is widely known as a tech guru after teaming with his friend Bill Gate to create Microsoft, which made both of them multibillionaires. However, it’s Allen’s ownership of the Seattle Seahawks and the Portland Trail Blazers that made him an endearing figure to the public.
The Seattle Seahawks
In 1997, Allen purchased the Seahawks from previous owner Ken Behring. Over the last two decades, Allen helped guide the Seahawks into becoming one of the top franchises in the league with 3 Super Bowl appearances and one SB victory. According to ESPN, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell made the following comments about Allen in an official statement:
“Paul Allen was the driving force behind keeping the NFL in the Pacific Northwest. His vision led to the construction of CenturyLink Field and the building of a team that played in three Super Bowls, winning the championship in Super Bowl XLVIII. The raising of the “12th Man” flag at the start of every Seahawks home game was Paul’s tribute to the extraordinary fan base in the Seattle community.”
Goodell would go on to discuss how much he admired and sought advice from Allen. He credits Allen’s ownership of the Seahawks as making the NFL better than it was before he bought the team.
Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll tweeted the following: “Deeply saddened by the passing of @PaulGAllen. I’ll miss him greatly. His gracious leadership and tremendous inspiration will never be forgotten. The world is a better place because of Paul’s passion, commitment, and selflessness. His legacy will live on forever.”
Numerous current and former Seahawks players also took to Social Media to express their sadness and appreciation for Allen.
The Portland Trail Blazers
At the age of 35, Allen bought the Portland Trail Blazers in 1988 from former owner Larry Weinberg. At the time, he paid roughly $70 million for the team. For over 30 years, he’s been a driving force in the NBA and a beloved owner in the northwest. During his span as the Blazers’ owner, Portland has gone to the playoffs 19 times and to 2 NBA Finals. In 2015, the team was valued at just under $1 billion dollars. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver made the following comments about Allen via a press release:
“Paul Allen was the ultimate trail blazer – in business, philanthropy and in sports. As one of the longest-tenured owners in the NBA, Paul brought a sense of discovery and vision to every league matter large and small. He was generous with his time on committee work, and his expertise helped lay the foundation for the league’s growth internationally and our embrace of new technologies.”
Silver would go on to discuss how much Allen meant to the NBA and how much he will be missed.
Many current and former Portland Trail Blazers took to Social Media to express their condolences of the passing of Allen and share how much he had an impact on their lives.
Forever Changing the Northwest
Allen is credited for being one half of a tag team that put the northwest on the tech map. From there, he would go on to save a football franchise, make countless charitable donations, and help guide a region into great prosperity. Not only was he well known for his business acumen, but he was also well known for his philanthropic ventures. Allen’s longtime friend Bill Gates released some public comments about the passing of Paul. In addition to talking about their friendship, Gates stated the following about Allen:
“Paul loved life and those around him, and we all cherished him in return. He deserved much more time, but his contributions to the world of technology and philanthropy will live on for generations to come.”
Perhaps, there’s no better way to close out an article on this “giant” of a man than by using his own words: “As long as we work together – with both urgency and determination – there are no limits to what we can achieve.”
RIP Paul Allen
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