Zollie Volchok, a onetime theater manager and entertainment promoter who as general manager and president of the Seattle SuperSonics lured legions of fans to their arena and helped lead the franchise to its only N.B.A. championship, died Sunday in Seattle. He was 95. The cause was pneumonia, his son Gary said. The famous story told about Volchok is that not long after the Sonics entered the league — their first season was 1967-68 — the team’s owner, Sam Schulman, approached him about joining the franchise. Volchok, whose closest previous brush with the world of sports was his brief ownership of a roller derby team several years earlier, could not have been more surprised. “I don’t know anything about basketball,” Volchok said. “Neither do my players,” Schulman said.
Zollie Volchok Rumors
Zollie Volchok, former president and general manager of the Seattle SuperSonics, died Sunday night. He was 95. Volchok, whose roots were in vaudeville and entertainment, was talked out of retirement by owner Sam Schulman to become the Sonics’ general manager. He held that position when the team won its only NBA championship in 1979. The Mercer Island, Wash., resident also owned a 5 percent share of the Sonics when Sam Schulman sold the team to Barry Ackerley on Oct. 14, 1983. Ackerley died March 21.