Just days after the NBA draft, we already have a 1st round pick demanding a trade. That sure didn't take long. Chinese superstar import Yi Jianlian is apparently asking to avoid ever playing for the Milwaukee Bucks, seeking a "bigger market" with a "larger Chinese population".
Anyone here prefer Spencer Hawes to Yi? Raise your hands...
So Yi, here's what the City of Sacramento has to offer to you:
1. A long history and large population of Chinese descent.
Culture California: "Hundreds of Chinese came to the Sacramento area in the mid-1800s in search of riches. After the gold ran out, many stayed to work as merchants, cooks, farmers or laborers, helping to build the Transcontinental Railroad and reclaiming delta land." and "With approximately 19 percent of Sacramento residents of Asian or Pacific Islander heritage, you're sure to find festivities celebrating just about every Asian culture throughout the year."
2. A large population eager to promote you and your skills.
The World Almanac 2007 cites Milwaukee's population as 578,887, and that number is declining, down 3 percent from 2000 to 2005. In contrast, while Sacramento has only 456,441 in population in the same survey, our city is growing at a rate of 12.1% from 2000 to 2005, practically booming! And if you count Stockton (286,926 with a 17.7% growth rate), and Modesto (207,011 with a 9.6% growth rate), you're basically at a million people, all ready to raise the roof for Yi to take on Yao.
3. A new generation of Kings fans ready to embrace something new.
Let's face it, Yi. Kevin Martin and Justin Williams just might be all we've got to be excited about right now. Another year of Kenny Thomas, Mike Bibby, Brad Miller and Ron Artest would be pure torture. And we're not exactly that enthused about Spencer Hawes, and won't be until he drops 30 at some point this season, something I'm not exactly holding my breath for. If you join the Kings, you would immediately become our #1 or #2 option, and we could grow the team around you. I promise.
You can also let Milwaukee know that all those guys I mentioned would be ecstatic to play in Milwaukee, especially Ron-Ron. So make it happen.
4. We're on the West Coast! You can throw a rock and hit China!
Dude. You're 7 foot tall. So if you come out here on the West Coast and jump while facing west, I swear you can see Beijing. Don't believe me? Sign a contract first, and then I'll show you. Just sign a contract. Seriously. Besides, do you really want to add two or three more hours to a trip back and forth to the mainland from Milwaukee when your body frame doesn't exactly lean itself to fitting in coach? And I heard Milwaukee only offers coach. No first class. It's weird, but yeah, don't believe anything they tell you. The Kings would let you fly first class.
So, Yi, I understand you're frustrated. I would be too. Milwaukee? Seriously? I thought that was part of Southern Canada or something. That's not even the NBA most years, man. Come to the Kings. Tell your agents that it's the only place you'll play. We'll be waiting.