By Jessica Dumont
This former girl-on-the-grid (now residing in Roseville – good real estate market, sorry!) loves the NBA, especially her Sacramento Kings. Really, really loves them.
I remember the first Sacramento Kings game I ever attended. I was in first grade. My mom dressed me in a fancy outfit (why did she dress me up in a flower pattern for a sporting event?) and French braided my hair – the sign a very special occasion. I went with my Dad and two male cousins, and I remember cheering into my hand “Go Kings, Go Kings!” too quietly for anyone to hear me because I was shy but so excited.
Since then, I’ve been hopelessly devoted to this team. Sure, we’ve had our ups and downs and cooling off periods, but it’s pretty much been unconditional. I even turned my New England native, Boston sports-loving husband into an avid Kings fan. We were half-season ticket holders last year, and anyone who follows me on Twitter knows I obsessively tweet all things #herewebuild #herewestay #herewebuy #kingsallday…you get the picture. Even after going to games for 20 years, each trip to Sleep Train Arena is an event I look forward to attending. Even without the French braids and flowers.
I know I’m not alone in this fandom. And right now we are very close to losing the only major league sports team in Sacramento that makes this region proud – never mind its losing record. Whether you like the Kings or not, we’ve all been Maloofed in the form of a hush-hush deal made to ship the Kings up to Seattle for a cool $525 million. And we can’t let the team go without doing everything in our power to stop it. Yes, I know we’ve had to go through this charade more than once, but it hasn’t killed us yet.
Sacramento is a top 20 media market and the state capital of the world’s eighth largest economy. We need major league sports, and more importantly we need a world class sports and entertainment complex that will make our city proud. A brand new, nationally recognized venue that will bring vitality to the grid and make the downtown area dazzle with premier concerts, events and shows.
The Kings may leave at the end of the season, and I am prepared for the devastation that will ensue for the city in its wake. I know that Mayor Kevin Johnson is leading this city through its final fight – a fight for peoples’ jobs, fans’ passion and a city’s pride.
If you want to get the latest info or learn more about what’s going on, there are some great resources to follow. Check out HereWeBuy.org. Read the stories from Marcos Breton and Ryan Lillis. Stay up-to-date on Sactown Royalty and Bleed Black and Purple’s latest posts. Give Grant Napear a listen.
While we still have the chance, we have to keep on believing in our team and our city. Let’s get a new arena on the grid, and while we’re at it, let’s cross our fingers that we can keep the Kings.
Guest blogger Jessica (Love) Dumont is a public relations professional in downtown Sacramento. While she adores her gig in PR, she also loves to write, travel, cook, drink red wine (what other kind is there?), and sweat it out in fitness classes.