We’ve gotten some arena-themed reminders the past two weeks of just how fleeting the best-laid plans and allegiances can be in professional sports ownership.

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We’ve gotten some arena-themed reminders the past two weeks of just how fleeting the best-laid plans and allegiances can be in professional sports ownership.

First, documents were released showing a Tukwila arena group headed by Connecticut businessman Ray Bartoszek courted Hollywood movie producer Thomas Tull of Legendary Studios fame. Tull’s business acquisitions specialist, Clint Kisker, flew up here in February, and non-disclosure agreements were handed out featuring the name Legendary Sports Group (LSG), with the studio’s logo — a logo, I tell you! — emblazoned across the paperwork.

But Tull ultimately chose not to invest.

Then, there was a report Los Angeles real estate magnate and would-be NHL owner Victor Coleman was thinking of splitting from his non-binding agreement with Sodo arena builder Chris Hansen. This, after Hansen’s arena and NBA partner, Steve Ballmer, abruptly bolted from him a year ago this month so he could buy the Los Angeles Clippers.

Lesson learned? Ownership “groups” in professional sports come and go and are not cast in stone until all documents are signed, teams acquired or venues built.

The sports world is full of wacky stories about partnerships created, altered, foiled and even revived at future dates. When it comes to an arena for the Seattle area, it’s best not to rule out potential partnerships or declare projects dead at any one location until the ticket windows actually open someplace.

As the Tukwila venture taught us, logos on paper mean nothing when it comes to potential deals worth hundreds of millions. The fact a production studio’s name and logo were on some non-disclosure documents meant for private eyes — though subject to a public records request that exposed them — merely suggests talks had progressed to where there was hope of a partnership.

But hope isn’t a done deal.

My first exposure to the fragility of sports partnerships came while covering the CFL’s Montreal Alouettes in their 1996 relocation after two years in Baltimore. The team’s ownership consisted of president and front-man Jim Speros and a silent partner who’d been putting up the majority of his team’s money before choosing to stop doing so.

The partnership naturally began defaulting on bills, so Speros recruited an investment banker named Robert Wettenhall as his future new majority backer. Speros introduced Wettenhall to good pal Larry Smith, the soon-to-be-outgoing commissioner of the financially-teetering league, assuring him the Alouettes would have stability the following season.

Then, in the 1996-97 offseason, just as Wettenhall seemed poised to buy the team, commissioner Smith seized the franchise from Speros and placed it in league hands. Wettenhall was then given the franchise by the league, but, instead of hiring Speros as his president — which had sort of been the plan — he turned around and gave that job to Smith, who was about to be an unemployed league commissioner.

Long story short: Smith proved a superb president and helped save the CFL in Montreal while Wettenhall became one of the best owners in league history. But their partnership began with serious shifts of allegiances that caught many off-guard — especially Speros, the guy who’d lured Wettenhall as his partner.

Partnerships form and dissolve. Investors get courted, the first dates go great and then she never phones back.

In Bartoszek’s case, not getting Tull hurts. How significantly depends on whether his group gets Tukwila’s arena to fly.

There’s a reason Bartoszek says he’s focused only on getting the arena done. Get permission to build this year, and a letter of intent for an NHL franchise could be awarded, with the NBA soon to follow.

You think investors won’t be lining up for that? Maybe at that point, Tull changes his mind. Or, perhaps five equivalent investors shove him out of the way.

Or, perhaps Hansen and Coleman resolve differences and produce enough private money to get an “NHL first” arena plan for Sodo through a skeptical Seattle city council vote. Maybe Hansen finds another main investor to replace Ballmer’s billions.

But until Hansen gets it together, it’s a two-city race.

Hansen has to keep Coleman on-board and avoid delaying council approval so a Sodo arena gets the go-ahead by early next year.

If you’re Bartoszek, you want your arena approved before Hansen’s to entice the NHL if Sodo experiences further setbacks.

Bartoszek doesn’t have to worry yet about who’ll pay for teams. Build the arena and there should be investors lining up for that.

Don’t laugh: Hansen could even be one of those.

After all, if Hansen can’t get a Sodo arena built, why not eventually fulfill his dream of NBA ownership in Tukwila? Crazier things have happened in sports.

Remember, we’re already talking about putting NHL and NBA teams in Tukwila. It doesn’t get much zanier than that.