Disclaimer; This might not be as entertaining as other "FTM"-style letters, but I want this to be one that they read, however big of a longshot that might be.
Hey Joe, hey Gavin,
This is a little story that might explain why so many of us are hurt if you don't understand already, and I promise this won't be me attacking you. I'm just. . . I'm confused.
You see, I'm 21 years old so your family has owned the Kings for most of my life. I've grown up with the words "Maloofs" and "Kings" being pretty much synonymous. The Kings were a huge part of my upbringing, we had Kings and Monarchs season tickets for my entire life up until about 2008 (Reppin' Section 204, row G, seats 5-8 all day!). My family has given your family enough money to easily pay for my college, so you could say we were- and still are- pretty invested in this team. Some of my favorite stories are from when I met my favorite Kings players during the glory days. I even met you, Joe. Twice for that matter. Oh hell, let's tell that story-
I remember it was in the year 2001 (I think) and I was at a Monarchs game with my family which consisted of my mom, dad and two little sisters who have never been big sports fans, but were in love with the Monarchs (Ticha Penichero and Yolanda Griffith are still their heroes). I even remember that we were playing the Indiana Fever. As we are watching the game my dad points out to me that my favorite player, Peja Stojakovic, was sitting on the baseline. Immediately I wanted to go meet him, I needed to find a way.
With my dad's encouragement, I set off to go see if I could get his autograph. While I was only 10 years old, I had known my way around Arco Arena for years. As I went down the aisle I could see him and I could feel myself getting nervous. Once I got to the row behind Peja, a security guard crushed my dreams and told me I wasn't allowed to go down there, even just to talk to Peja.
Dejected, I started walking back up the aisle. Once I got out onto the concourse a teenage girl came up to me, and I will never forget what she said, "Mr. Maloof wants to talk to you". Immediately I was terrified I was getting in trouble. So this girl led me over to a suite and there I stood right in front of one of my heroes at the time, Joe Maloof.
I really doubt you remember this, Joe, even though 4 years later when I talked to you at a Kings event you told me you did, but you asked me what happened. So I explain, in my nervous shaky voice that the, "lady at the bottom of the row told me I couldn't talk to Peja". You pulled out your cell phone and started making things happen, like only an owner could do. Before I realized what was happening I was being led down the aisle by one of your "people". When I got up to Peja, I had no idea what to say but he had a huge grin on his face and tugged on the #16 Kings jersey I was wearing and said, "I like your jersey". So I got Peja's autograph after talking to him for a while and set off, as happy as could be.
You were the master of customer service Joe. You made me feel like you really cared about me, even though I was just a little kid wanting an autograph. So I really, honestly, am curious, what happened?
And you, Gavin, I never got the chance to meet you, but I could always connect with you. Whenever the team was doing well I felt like we were celebrating together. I really felt a bond with you because of how energized you were about the team and about the city. So I really, honestly want to know, what happened?
I just want an explanation as to what gave your family a change of heart. I know Sacramento isn't the most glorious market in the world, but I know you guys used to care about this city. We did nothing but show you love and did nothing but welcome you into our city like family. What made you so badly want to leave this beautiful city that I call home?
I really am sorry about how your reputation has gone down hill, no one wanted that to happen, but when you try and rip away our team without even talking to us and telling us why, it hurts. But you can still resurrect your reputation now that you are going to sell the team, you can still be heroes to the city of Sacramento. Please sell to Mark Mastrov. At least give him a chance. At least talk to us, your loyal fans and supporters for so many years, and tell us what happened instead of having your brother, George, or your spokesman, Eric Rose, say "no comment". And be honest with us.
Just remember, there is still time for your family to be seen as heroes in Sacramento and to save this city that you once loved.
A Sacramento Kings fan for life