I just received my copy of ESPN The Magazine, on the heels of the report yesterday of the 10th annual ranking of pro franchises, including the MLB, NBA, NFL and NHL, by ESPN.go.com. It was reported here yesterday by A Royal Pain’s, Bryan Rosa.
The Maloofs, owners of the Sacramento Kings’ franchise, received a virtual spanking by Peter Keating in ESPN’s annual Franchise Issue, earning the title of:
“Ultimate (Horrible) Bosses”
This title came as a result of ranking last on the category of ownership, which covers, “honesty and loyalty to core players and to the community.” Keating pondered the question:
“How do you finish last, by a landslide, in fan voting for owner honesty?”
Keating outlined six of his own reasons, citing playing “footsie with Anaheim,” striking a deal with Mayor Kevin Johnson, and then backing out six weeks later as three of them.
Keating further added:
“The Maloofs want out of Sacramento…. they’re back in fading Power Balance Pavilion… It has wooden risers and a leaky roof and ranked 121st among stadiums in our voting.”
That the Sacramento Kings’ franchise ranked so low among voters, shouldn’t come as any surprise to any loyal Kings fans, here in Sacramento, who have had to live this debacle over the past year.
By the way, the Oklahoma City Thunder ranked Number One. This is the franchise to model if it wants high fan ratings.
Peter Keating gets it.
Sports fans across the country spoke with their votes; Keating reported his analysis of those votes. It is a message, not only to the Maloofs, but to other professional franchises, and other major leagues – if this is how you treat your fans, this is how you are going to rank. You can’t hide under a table, the rest of the sporting world is going to see what you are doing.