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SBD/April 14, 2011/Franchises
Emotional Crowd Cheers On Kings In Potential Last Game In Sacramento
Published April 14, 2011
I WILL REMEMBER YOU: In Sacramento, Ailene Voisin writes, "So how do you say goodbye? If this truly is goodbye? You remember the Kings." Voisin: "The cheering, the chanting, the symphony of cowbells. The uniquely passionate crowd that ranked second to none in the NBA for the better part of three decades. ... The NBA still doesn't have many places like this" (SACRAMENTO BEE, 4/14). ESPN's Bomani Jones said of last night possibly being the last NBA game in Sacramento, "While normally I'm not very emotional about these things, that's a city that supported a team that quite honestly most of us would not have gone to watch. ... There are a lot of great fan bases, and the Kings are on that list. For them to lose that team is sad especially considering you don't know if the place they are going want a team" ("Around The Horn," ESPN, 4/13).
RELOCATION ROUNDUP: In Sacramento, Dale Kasler notes NBA relocation requests normally are "overwhelmingly approved," but the Kings' move to Anaheim "could be complicated by the presence of two teams already in" L.A. NBA Commissioner David Stern "has long been cool to the idea of a third team in the greater Los Angeles market," and Lakers Owner Jerry Buss and Clippers Owner Donald Sterling are "widely expected to lobby against the move." The Kings "probably won't know their fate until sometime in early fall," when the NBA BOG "would vote on the Maloofs' relocation request." Meanwhile, "last-ditch efforts continued" yesterday to "keep the Kings from leaving." Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson today "will address the NBA's financial advisory committee," and to "buttress Johnson's presentation in New York, the Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce pleaded with businesses to commit to becoming corporate sponsors of the team." Chamber President Matt Mahood "was hoping for commitments of at least $5 million in time for Johnson's appearance," and he "asked for pledges of at least $100,000 apiece for luxury suites, blocks of tickets or sponsorships" (SACRAMENTO BEE, 4/14). Johnson said that he will "provide documentation in New York of expanded Sacramento business sponsorship interest in the NBA." Johnson: "It's more probable than not they're going to Anaheim. I just have to show why it makes good business sense to have Sacramento in the league" (L.A. TIMES, 4/14).
PUT AWAY THE RUBBER STAMP: NBA reporter Sam Amick said the pushback from the BOG about a move to Anaheim "is going to be significantly more" than the Maloofs are expecting. Amick: "I'm not saying it's going to get voted down, but I think right now the league and owners are just kind of wondering if Anaheim is the right spot." Meanwhile, Amick said he has been told Johnson is "going to take the high road" in his presentation to the BOG, and it will not be a "mud-slinging campaign against the Maloofs." Amick: "But he does have to show why they need another team here. If they're going to lose this one, bring another one in" ("Chronicle Live," CSN Bay Area, 4/13).