Rumors about Sacramento Kings' broken arena deals have left some fans stale of the posturing and negotiations that seemingly leave fans wondering where their beloved team has gone. With the February 20th trade of Thomas Robinson, Tyler Honeycutt, and Francisco Garcia to the Houston Rockets, an era has ended.
Garcia spent his first seven seasons in Sacramento. In leaving, the Kings no longer have any physical connection to the golden age of modern Kings basketball. This singular tie to the memories of seasons from Chris Webber, Mike Bibby and Peja Stojakovic have vanished. In their wake is the mediocrity of eight forwards, DeMarcus Cousins, Tyreke Evans, and a constantly overlooked Jimmer Fredette.
The acquisition of Patrick Patterson and Toney Douglas further complicate the lack of image and game plan that has prevented the youthful exuberance of the Kings to take any meaningful form of progress. Fans wanting to compel support for the team get little help from on-court performance for triggering excitement.
Memories are one stronghold that still linger in the minds of fans, players, and NBA journalists. The Los Angeles Lakers rivalry has lost teeth, the Golden State Warriors appear playoff bound, and the preparations in Seattle continue to be ominous.
Even with the career numbers of Francisco Garcia at just over eight points, two rebounds and one assist, in 462 games, he was far from the face of the franchise. He was, however, the only remaining face of the past. In one trade, the team no longer represents the former continuity of cowbells and sold out crowds in Sacramento.
All of this may read to be a dismissal of the team, but that is not the written intention. In hand, I hold four tickets for the final game of this season in Sacramento. My Hedo Turkoglu autographed sign is on the wall signifying the first time my high school best friend and I hung out while we were outside of class. My Mike Bibby throwback hangs in the closet still, and I have refused every Los Angeles Clippers and Lakers memorabilia to come across my desk in Orange County.
The important thing now is the future. Player trades happen. Players move on and retire. The question is: what will the memories of today look like tomorrow in the rear-view mirror of the Sacramento Kings' team bus?