Tuesday, December 13, 2016

My Hometown Team

I grew up in a small town suburb of Sacramento, CA.  Sacto in my opinion, has always been a city with an identity crisis. They are the capitol of the state of CA yet are overshadowed by cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, San Jose, etc.  Sacramento has been labeled a "cow town" by many and, while there are some cows in the area, there are places throughout central CA that are much more cow centered.  Growing up we all thought CA was a big city and deserved to have big league sports teams.  There were rumors of the Giants relocating to Sacramento around the same time they almost moved to Toronto but neither materialized (thank goodness!).

In the mid 1980's we finally became a big league town when the Kansas City Kings of the NBA moved to Sacramento.  The city quickly constructed Arco Area in a large warehouse that seated 10,333 fans.  My dad went in with 3 business partners on a couple season tickets and someone who was a best a casual basketball fan fell in love with pro hoops.  I got to go to a few games their first few years with a couple highlights being seeing the Celtics and Larry Bird and swapping seats in the 3rd Quarter with my dad's buddy to watch Michael Jordan set an Arco Area 3rd Quarter scoring record from the 4th or 5th row.

I moved down to So Cal for college and still followed the Kings with a nice rivalry brewing between my Kings and the Lakers but my Kings could never get over the hump. However, for a few years, they had a pretty amazing teams with players like Jason "White Chocolate" Williams, Mike Bibby, Doug Christie, Scot Pollard, Bobby Jackson and my two favorites Chris Webber and Peja Stojakovic.  I liked Peja so much that when we found a box turtle in my yard and decided to keep him as a pet he was named Peja.

I have a pretty large player collection of Chris Webber and you will see some of my more recent pick ups below but every so often I get the urge to seek out some inexpensive autos or relics of my favorite players from my favorite NBA area.

I saw that Peja has been signing recently and found this great trio of autographed cards:

Peja Stojakovic - 2015-16 Panini Prizm Orange Auto 39/65
Peja Stojakovic - 2015-16 Gala Action Autographs 40/40
Peja Stojakovic - 2015-16 Immaculate Collection Auto 25/45

I also stumbled across this Autographed Mike Bibby card featuring a sweet action shot.  I remember feeling upset when Jason Williams was traded to get Bibby into town but Bibby was one of the most clutch players in Sacramento history. I quickly became a fan.
Mike Bibby - 2007-08 SP Rookie Threads Portraits Auto
The final cards in my walk down memory lane are these base cards and inserts of Chris Webber.  As mentioned above, I have a pretty solid collection of Webber cards with 682 different cards including these I have picked up over the last few months.  I have mentioned this before but one of the reasons I like collecting a few basketball players is the great action photos featured on many of the cards.

Since their peak years the Kings have really struggled.  This year they have a brand new stadium that I hope aides in a rise out of the basement and at least into playoff contention in the coming years.  Let's Go Kings!


  1. I'm bummed that Webber/Peja team never got over the hump. Very fun team to watch.

  2. I'll have to remember not to give all the BKB cards I get away without going through them first.

  3. That's a lot of Webbers. He ranks in my top 10 most cards but has not cleared the 600 mark yet. I believe this is the first time I've seen 2001-02 High Topps on any blog post, even my own. One of my favorite relic pulls ever is of Peja, a shoelace Refractor from Pristine.

  4. Very cool Peja autos! Great penmanship too!

  5. I have a few friends who live in Sac... but most of my visits involve passing through on my way up to Tahoe. Sometimes I'll drive out to Davis and grab a pie at Ikedas. As for the Kings, that was a great rivalry they had against the Lakers in the early 2000's. I was a Lakers fan, but I always enjoyed watching Peja shoot his jumper.