Sodo arena investor and potential Seattle SuperSonics principal Chris Hansen announced on Tuesday the results of the online waiting list for Sonics tickets: An impressive 44,877 requests, plus 268 applicants for suites and 983 indications of interest in business sponsorships.

Seating capacity for basketball in the new arena is expected to be 18,500.

The numbers give Hansen some firepower as he faces an NBA relocation committee meeting Wednesday in New York, where a competing group from Sacramento will also make a presentation in a bid to keep the Kings in the California capital.

“In addition to significantly exceeding our expectations, you all have sent a very clear message that all Sonic fans know in their hearts… that Seattle has and always will be a GREAT basketball city,” Hansen wrote on SonicsArena.com, the website of the proposed new arena and the relocation bid.

The waiting list at SonicsArena.com opened on March 14 and the site was quickly shut down by what Hansen said was more than 6,000 hits per second in the first half-hour the list was open. The list was closed Monday.

The numbers are not concrete commitments of financial support; they are merely requests to be put on a waiting list and contacted in the future by a sales representative for the team, should it move to Seattle. That decision, by the full NBA Board of Governors, is not expected until April 18 or 19.

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn and King County Executive Dow Constantine are expected to join Hansen in making Seattle’s pitch in New York on Wednesday.