Sacramento Kings vs. San Antonio Spurs
It was going to be my first live basketball (NBA) match. We (I and Amod) went to Arco Arena, Sacramento for the match. Sacramento Kings were 2-1 down in the playoffs but the team's moral was high because Kings won the last game with a last moment shot giving them one point lead and victory.
Amod told me that Arco Arena is one of the loudest court in whole NBA league. I have not seen any other places yet, but I will agree with him. We were given two Thundersticks
and a Made in China
Glowing Stick so that we can cheer for Kings and make a lot of noise. I enjoyed making a lot of noise with the Thundersticks
I could never imagine organizers will EVER give things that can be thrown towards players, but they gave both type of sticks and fans just made a lot of noise and had fun they never thought of 'throwing' them on the court. That is completely different behaviour from the Indian cricket lovers. I got another surprise; cameras were allowed but not many people were interested in taking a photograph of their star players, these guys simply go to all the matches, they don't need photographs :-)
Introduction of the home team was a really cool. First the visiting team was introduced with full lights in the arena and then lights went dim and were shut off completely. But everyone was waving their glowing stick and it was a beautiful sight. A grand welcome for their home team.
When I went to the game, I was a Tim Duncan and Spurs fan but within first 2 minutes I changed sides and was cheering for Kings. I could not bring myself to 'boo' the Spurs' players. :-). Every point/steal/rebound from Kings was cheered, every miss by Spurs was treated the same but every foul by Kings was booed... And at times the fans were correct in booing.
The only player who was able to play well from Spurs side was Tony Parker, he scored 22 points. I kept waiting for Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili to start the fireworks. Tim Duncan scored 17 points but I expected much more from him.
In all the match videos I have seen, I don't remember seeing goal tending
in any of these matches, but today I got to see two instances of goal tending, once from the defence player and then later from offence side too.
In the end, Kings steamrollered
Spurs with a 102-84 victory.
I watched the match from two different spots. We saw first half from behind one of the baskets. We were actually quite close to the players and basket. In the second half we moved to 'center' side and were able to see game at both the rings properly.
After the match; Amod took Gavin Maloof's autographs on one of the thundersticks. Amod wanted me to take a photograph with Gavin. As soon as Amod asked him if he can get photographed with him, this guy started posing and asked 'Who has the camera?'. It may not sound that funny but I was really humorous at that time.
I took a LOT of photographs and will be posting them soon.