I'm FanPosting this one. While my views are never meant to be viewed as the opinion of Sactown Royalty, this one is definitely to be viewed as one man, one opinion.
I received an email today:
As a valued Season Ticket Holder, I want to thank you for your support of the Sacramento Kings. The past several months have been extremely challenging, and I am so pleased to be able to share with you that the team will remain in Sacramento for the 2011-12 season.
We have been overwhelmed by the tremendous community support, led by Mayor Kevin Johnson and the Sacramento Metro Chamber, and by the passion and loyalty demonstrated by the always terrific Sacramento Kings fans. As a fellow Sacramentan, I am excited about the next steps for our community.
Next season presents Sacramento with a historic opportunity. We hope you will again choose to be part of it – and the team’s future – at this very pivotal and exciting time for the Sacramento Kings by renewing your season tickets. Please access www.commit2kings.com to find your renewal information, using your account ID (xxxxxx) to log in.
Over the next year Sacramento will be working diligently to secure the sports and entertainment complex our community deserves in order to make this a viable long-term home for the team. We are committed to working with local leaders to help make that happen.
I hope you will choose to join us next season. Let’s work together to make it our best season yet.
President, Business Operations
Maloof Sports & Entertainment
Now, there is no doubt that I am a bit hyper-sensitive right now, but I can't help but read a little extortion into this. You know, renew or we might have to leave. And while I was slightly offended, I was also honest enough to realize that I'm still angry over the treatment the fans received at Fan Depreciation Night, and how through this process years and years of undying fan support has been largely ignored by Maloof Sports & Entertainment. I understand that it was not personal, that it was only business. So that is now my approach - it is only business.
With that in mind, I clicked on my account to find that my ticket price is exactly the same as last year. However, I now only have six months to pay on my account instead of the ten months that I had last year. Also, the twenty free parking passes that I received last year are no more. So, net-net I am paying more in less time to secure tickets to watch a team that has won fewer games in the past two years combined than nine NBA teams won this past season. And with no new Collective Bargaining Agreement, I could be ponying up for a season that may not be played in part or entirety. And I have no assurance from the team that they are going to invest their usable cap space for upgraded talent, though the $240 that they saw fit to tack onto my bill this year via rescinding the parking passes should go a long way in securing a free agent.
Understand, I have always been of the mind that as a season ticket holder, you were investing in the future of the team. I never, never got upset when MS&E would discount tickets that I paid full boat for, and I supported every one of their ticket-selling promotions. A full arena was a fun arena, and it mattered not to me if I paid more for the experience than the guy sitting next to me. But that is the thought process of someone who is invested emotionally, and as the Maloofs have proven over the past several months, this is not personal, it's only business.
As such, I simply cannot make what I consider to be a bad business decision. As a person that has tight cash flow, I cannot justify investing season ticket money in this team at this time. Not when I take into consideration the current talent base, the grand possibility of little or no season, the fact that under these circumstances my ticket package has actually become more expensive, and the fall-off in customer service that used to be a MS&E staple.
Under the economic conditions that this city still finds itself in, after the product that has been placed before Kings fans for the past few years, after the Maloofery that has taken place over the past several weeks and months, and taking into account the precarious nature of this upcoming NBA season, MS&E needs to be bending over backwards for its customers. But it seems that it is the customer that is doing the bending over. And as I advance in years, I'm just not that flexible anymore.
Please understand, I'm not advising anyone to not buy tickets (or even season tickets). This team needs our support to survive in Sacramento. If you go into it with no expectations, you won't be disappointed. But I cannot simply give the Maloofs my business because they demand it. They still need to earn it, and they are not doing that in the here and the now.
I will likely share tickets with another season ticket holder looking to sell off a few games, or I will buy a game here and there. But I just can't bring myself to renew my season tickets when I consider all of the elements. It might make sense if I look at it emotionally, but I won't do that. This is business.
My apologies for the negativity during this celebratory time. Go Kings!