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I couldn't make it to the game last night. I am almost glad, because crying at a basketball game sucks. I didn't cry when the Kings were behind, I didn’t cry when the Kings made a 20 point come back in the 4th quarter and then took the lead. I didn't even cry when Kobe made a 3-pointer with 4 seconds left (as I knew he would) and the game went into OT.
I didn't even cry when the Kings lost.
I think I started to tear up right about the time that the final buzzer sounded and not a single person moved. When, despite the loss the crowd stood and started applauding, loud thunderous applause like in the days of the great Sacramento Kings teams. I am pretty sure I actually had tears rolling down my face when head coach Paul Westphal walked out onto the court and started applauding the fans.
It is just a basketball team right?
Watch this Youtube video of Kings TV annoucers Grant Naper and Jerry Reynolds signing off last night and tell me if this franchise is just a basketball team here in Sacramento. These guys aren't losing their jobs. What they are losing is 26 years of commitment, family and history in a city that has beloved this franchise through thick and thin. What they are going to is a sport saturated market full of front-running fair weather fans who will only go to the game if they can catch a celeb sighting.
What do the Kings mean to you? To me they mean memories. Memories of countless hours spent with my dad and my husband screaming at the TV or going to the games. Get-togethers with friends to watch play-off games. Group outings to the games because that was fun. So much fun.
Hell, I was at a Sacramento Kings game when I watched (from the upstairs Cantina Bar) my beloved San Francisco Giants win the World Series last November. I will never, ever forget that.
So how did I feel last night? I felt like someone died. I will never, ever forget that.