Saturday, April 2, 2011

Hail Mary attempts to keep the Kings and the sad honest truth

Hail Mary passes are fun.

Launched high in the air with a prayer, hoping for a deflection or two, a defender misjudging, a lunging grab, and then maybe, just maybe, a miracle.

There are a lot of Hail Marys being tossed in Sacramento of late, most notably "Here We Build," the brainchild of KHTK's Carmichael Dave.

It's basically an arena telethon. Make your pledge to finance a new arena and watch the tote board soar.

It would be easy to throw cold water on this attempt, but it's a chance for the common folk of Sacramento to feel a little bit in control of their fate. And that's important as Kings fans watch helplessly as their beloved team creeps out of town.

I say knock yourself out. Go for it. I will never criticize activism in the name of civic good.

But then there's this: the effort to collect signatures in Anaheim to put the city's bond measure on a public ballot.

It's an interesting strategy, but it's petty and silly. You wonder how people in Sacramento would feel if another city took to our streets to prevent us from luring a franchise back to town.

SPOILER ALERT: Don't read further if you don't want to learn an important secret.

The Kings are gone.


Out of here.

The city blundered with silly strategies. The Maloofs tore down the team and destroyed enthusiasm. And now it's over.

Only the Lakers, by bringing to bear an outrageous relocation fee, could even have the slightest chance in hell of changing the outcome.

So now it's time to think future, not past.

I doubt the money's here to build an arena without the Kings, but I'd still love to see an amazing development in the railyards. I'd still like to see a new entertainment facility for concerts and shows.

The main focus of the city should be economic development. Rebuild the base. Grow prosperity. Bring in corporate entities that may someday be willing to partner in an arena project down the road.

It may take a decade or more to see pro sports here again. It may never happen. But there's a city to grow in Sacramento. A city that can be vibrant and alive. Already, in parts of downtown, new restaurants and clubs have begun to make such an impact. There's a whole lot more to do.

The Kings added flavor and passion and their loss hurts. But now it's time for a rebirth.