Battle: LA | | Brainerd, Minnesota

Battle: LA

Circa 2002: Kobe Bryant reaches around Doug Christie for a steal...kind of  like Los Angeles trying to steal the Kings franchise.
Circa 2002: Kobe Bryant reaches around Doug Christie for a steal...kind of like Los Angeles trying to steal the Kings franchise.

I hate Los Angeles. That city takes everything that is great about California and ruins it. I might be a little biased. I am after all from Sacramento and we tend to have a bit of an inferiority complex when it comes to the City of Angels. Usually we just mutter on about how we might as well divide California into North and South, but recently things have gotten a little more personal.  

Los Angeles is very close to taking our Sacramento Kings. Granted the owners are financially strapped and they have been threatening to move the Kings out of town for a long time, but to Los Angeles?!? Really!?!

Los Angeles has two basketball teams already. And one of them is the Lakers. Did I mention I hate the Lakers? Sending the Kings to LA would be like... well I can't think of a metaphor that doesn't highlight the insecurities of my hometown, so I'll let you come up with one of you own.

Let's just say it would be the worst thing ever. Ever.

Do you know what they want to call the Kings when they move to Southern California? The Los Angeles Royals**. Are you kidding me?!

I'm a loyal Kings fan. I've been sporting my purple through good years and bad (which makes being a Vikings fan very convenient). They haven't really held up to their end of the bargain in recent years in being the great basketball team Sacramentans have counted on them to be.

In fact, I'm almost certain they are fighting neck in neck with the Timberwolves for last place in the NBA. They're kind of on a hiatus from greatness right now. Okay they have been horrible for almost a decade. Games used to sell out and now they are practically paying people to go to games. It's might border on pathetic. 

But there was one great season. 

 The Kings were so close to clenching the Western Conference. So close and yet so far. And you know who we lost to?

Those blasted Lakers.

June 2002: We were in game seven of the finals. It was a battle hard fought. There were some reffing discrepancies and some pretty nasty fouls, but the Kings fought hard. We were up by a basket whenstupid Robert Horry sinks a 3 at the buzzer taking with him 18 years of momentum and breaking the hearts of Sacramento Kings fans. The next day's headlines read "How Horry-ble". And it was.

We never recovered.

And now the region of the state that steals all of our water wants our basketball team. I'm a Kings fan...but my loyalties will die with the franchise. I will never be an LA Royals fan. If the Kings went anywhere else in the country I would still count myself part of their fandom. But not LA. No way.

Minnesotans should understand my pain. I hate to bring up another painful memory, but Los Angeles did steal their Lakers from the land of 10,000 lakes and then went on to win several NBA championships. They're a freaking dynasty. You should be mad too. Because, if the NFL survives the lockout, there's an excellent chance LA will shift its attention back to abducting the Minnesota Vikings.

That's an awful lot of purple for one city.

So my words to the sports fan of Los Angeles: You may have won the battle, but we will win the war. You can take our Kings, but you can't take our memories. And you can try to take the Vikings, but I live amongst the don't want to mess with them. They will swing their battle axes. There will be blood. Lakers blood (which I can only assume is purple).

So long Kings. I've never been so excited for baseball season to start.

**There is also talk about the Kings maybe going to Anaheim instead of Los Angeles, which is technically not the same city, but it doesn't really matter down's all the same. It takes an hour to drive ten miles no matter which direction you're headed. It's the principle. It's still thievery.

***Wait...I thought of one. Vikings moving to Green Bay and changing their name to Green Bay Packers B-team. See what I mean?