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A New Enemy

We've been concentrating on Las Vegas as the threat to take our Kings.

But that city has apparently turned its focus to baseball and the Florida Marlins, according to USA Today.

The Maloofs are interested in bringing MLB to LV, as well, and remain some of the biggest boosters for pro sports in Sin City. I'm personally glad that they'd rather take a different franchise, one that can't sell out playoff games in their current location, in lieu of the Kings.

But Anaheim, they're just getting greedy. They have the damn Angels, they have the damn Ducks and now they want the NBA.

They made a play for the Hornets, apparently. And of course, the chairman of the Pond's management team is quoted in this morning's Bee as wanting the Kings in his building.

Orange County, where you would assume most of an Anaheim NBA franchise's fanbase would come from given the proximity to the Lakers and Clippers franchises, has an estimated 2004 population of 3 million, and grew about 5% between 2000 and 2004.

Sacramento County - which lacks distractions like a pro baseball team, a pro hockey team, several massive theme parks and, you know, the city of freaking Los Angeles - has an estimated 2004 population of 1.3 million, but grew a whopping 10.5% from 2000 to 2004.

The LA Angels' 2005 attendance was fantastic (fourth-best in the league), and the team's attendance has consistently risen throughout this decade.

You'd expect the NHL's attendance to be down following the lockout, and of course the Ducks are no exception. But the Ducks have fallen harder than other teams, probably because of two reasons - hockey has little cultural significance in Anaheim compared to, say, Montreal, and the Los Angeles market is oversaturated with pro hockey to begin with.

Anaheim, traditionally in the middle of the pack in attendance, is close to the bottom this year. (I would take ESPN's numbers at the previous link with a grain of salt - "buggy" isn't even the word; I have, however, sampled some individual samples, and I'm comfortable with my previous statement about the Ducks being worse off than other NHL franchises post-lockout.)

Why again does Anaheim need a pro basketball franchise? The city supports its highly successful MLB team well and its moderately successful/not mediocre NHL team fairly to poorly. Plus, Los Angeles already has two NBA teams, one of which is kind of historically beloved (and terribly evil).

If the selfish mongrols of The OC absolutely must have an NBA franchise, though, I've got a suggestion: Take the damn Clippers.

They don't have their own home floor, they only draw 89% of capacity (compared to the Lakers' 98% and the Kings', you know, 100%) and really don't have a niche area.

Forget my previous suggestions of sending Sterling to San Diego or Fresno - send his ass to Anaheim!

Just leave the Kings out of it.