The Kings – To Boycott Or Not To Boycott

Posted by Nick Kump at Mar 28, 2011 04:09 PM |
Cross-posted at

Maloof Boycott

The owners of the Sacramento Kings have gone into hiding to avoid questions about the Kings’ impending move to Anaheim, but this itself raises many questions including: does the true Kings fan boycott the team on April 1 or push for a sellout?

The idea was raised two weeks ago and since then there has been a ‘Bust Their Balls’ facebook group created and several articles written about the idea, including an article by Ryan Lillis in the Sacramento Bee that has generated well over 100 comments. The owners of the Kings, the Maloofs, have given every indication that they plan to move the team, going so far as to register the name of the new team, but what is really telling  is their lack of response to this boycott effort. They are so apathetic toward Sacramento and the Kings fan that they have refused to even publicly acknowledge their intentions to leave town.

This attitude and the Maloofs’ general conduct including wearing a Royals jersey (the new name they have planned for the team) to a Kings game clearly show they have little affinity for Sacramento. The only thing that speaks to the Maloofs is money, which is the prime motivation for leaving Sacramento and something they are short on after expanding their Las Vegas hotel in the middle of a recession.

The decision whether to boycott is not a question of whether we support the Sacramento Kings or not, rather it is a question of how we want to send the Kings out. There is nothing, not a single thing, that the people of Sacramento can do to keep the Kings here; there is more money to be made with a TV contract in the Los Angeles media market and the Maloofs would rather have their team located near the bright lights of Hollywood. However, the boycott is the only tool the fan has to leave any type of impression on the Maloofs at all. The Maloofs have repeatedly disrespected the people of Sacramento and the only way the fans can stand up for themselves is to boycott.

Either option, boycotting or selling out, is not going to make a difference in the outcome; the Maloofs want to leave and if they can, they will. Any fan that thinks selling out the last few games will change the Maloofs’ mind is out of touch with reality and has not been paying attention to how the Maloofs have behaved since they purchased the Kings. Why would we do anything but minimize the amount of money the Maloofs collect from the people of Sacramento as they leave town?

The boycott will show the Maloofs that the people of Sacramento will not tolerate the disrespect they have repeatedly shown and it will do so by hitting them in the only place the Maloofs truly value – their wallet. The boycott shows the Maloofs that you cannot conduct yourselves in such a conceited manner and expect people to continue to support you. Owning a sports team should be a privilege, the Kings have been in Sacramento before the Maloofs and it is a tragedy that the fans have to boycott in order to send a message that the owners cannot continue to act the way that they do.

Some fans have said that the true fan attends the game and brings all their friends with them, that they love professional basketball and the Kings and want to experience as much as possible before they leave town. Some things are bigger than basketball though, and telling the Maloofs once and for all that Sacramento only tolerates them because they happen to own the Kings could be one of them.

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