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Seattle Columnist: 'Don't Hate the Player, Hate the Game'

"Tell the NBA to get lost," Danny Westneat writes. "I bet they’ll be crawling back before you know it."

A Seattle Times columnist, irked by online remarks made by the Sacramento Bee's Marcos Breton, has some advice for the Sacramento region: wave goodbye to the Kings and hope for a better situation in the future.

The Seattle Times' Danny Westneat said in a column Tuesday that the Washington city did well to tell the former owners of the Seattle SuperSonics that the public wouldn't fund a new arena for that team.

"The people around here had just had enough, en masse, of the pro sports extortion racket," Westneat wrote. "And lo, look what happened as a result. Faster than you can say '12th-largest media market,' the billionaires and the NBA came sniffing back around."

He writes that a Seattle group's pending deal to buy the Sacramento Kings is strictly business, and urges Sacramento-area residents, "don’t hate the player, hate the game."

"Tell the NBA to get lost. I bet they’ll be crawling back before you know it."

Meanwhile, sports blog Deadspin chronicles the 1980s move of the then-Kansas City Kings–who "have been vagabonds for longer than the NBA has existed"–to Sacramento.

"It's never about one city 'stealing' a basketball team from another," Barry Petchesky writes. "In both Kansas City and Sacramento, the prime movers were not the fans, but the ownership groups that had soured on their investments and were willing to cash out even if it meant that the city would lose its team."

Speaking of investments, Forbes Magazine ranked NBA teams by value Wednesday, placing the Kings at No. 11, with a supposed value of $525 million–above the Oklahoma City Thunder, the team formerly known as the SuperSonics.

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What's your response to Danny Westneat's column in the Seattle Times? Is the Seattle region trying to "steal" the Kings, or is the comparison unfair? Tell us in the comments section below.

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