Maloofs Host Open Mic Dinner

Maloofs Host Open Mic Dinner

written by: Andrew Nicholson
March 17, 2008
Photo Gallery

Gavin Maloof

It wasn't a typical pregame meal.

It was far superior -- a chance to talk with the Kings owners.

Kings co-owners Joe and Gavin Maloof hosted their first of three 'Open Mic Dinners' Sunday afternoon where Kings Season Ticket Holders had the opportunity to enjoy a pregame meal and participate in an intimate discussion about the team and its future.

“It’s an honor and pleasure to host you, our most valued customers," Gavin said smiling as he welcomed the gym full of STHs in the Kings practice facility. "I can assure you that throughout the years we never have and never will take you for granted. We appreciate all that you do for the Kings, for my family, for this organization. You’ll always be remembered for that, thank you.”

The atmosphere was festive as Gavin detailed the Maloofs’ thoughts on the Kings play and the future of the team.

“This year, we have a lot of bright spots and there is light at the end of the tunnel,” he said. “One of the great spots we’ve had is our young players like Spencer Hawes, Quincy Douby, Francisco Garcia and Kevin Martin.

Gavin and Joe Maloof

“One of the real finds of the year has been Beno Udrih," Gavin continued to a rousing applause. "At the beginning of the season when we went through a losing streak, Joe was a little distraught and talked to Beno before he was with us. Beno told Joe, 'Don’t worry, I am coming, I am coming.' After that we went on a little winning streak.”

Like the team's most ardent fans, the Maloofs have been impressed with the work ethic of this year’s team. The product of that hard work has produced more than a handful of wins against some of the League's best -- Houston, San Antonio, Detroit, New Orleans, LA Lakers and Dallas to name a few.

“We’ve beaten a lot of the elite teams," Gavin said beaming. "We’re really pleased with the direction of the team.”

After opening the evening with the Maloofs’ veiws, they gave the microphone up to the fans to ask their most pressing questions.

“We’re moving toward the ultimate goal, which is someday, a title," Joe answered when asked about the goal of the team moving forward "We did it with the Monarchs and I know we can do it [with the Kings]. I think we have the best GM in the business in Geoff [Petrie]."

Joe Maloof

When asked how the team is being built, the Maloofs said that the young core is the foundation for improving the team organically.

“I’ll tell you one player who is going to be fantastic and I know one thing I’ve learned is he doesn’t play below the rim," Joe said grinning. "His name is Spencer Hawes.

“He’s always the first guy down the court. He hustles. That’s the road we’re going to take, to try and build through youth.”

The floor leader of the youth movement, Udrih, has been a hit in Sacramento as noted by the grand applause he received earlier. So another question the fans wanted to know the answer to was if they can hope to see him in purple and black for years to come.

"As Gavin mentioned, he was a terrific find and we're going to do everything we can to sign him," Joe said of Udrih's impending free-agency this summer.

Gavin Maloof

The dinner didn't last forever as the Kings-Raptors game was set to tip-off at 6 p.m., but it was clear that the meal and the discussion left a great impact on the STHs.

“I thought it was very special that they would do that for the fans," Brett Pedroia of Woodland said.

And the brother of the Boston Red Sox's World Series Champion second baseman, Dustin, wasn't the only one who enjoyed the event.

"I feel that I can speak for myself, actually this isn't a question, and hopefully I can speak for everybody here," second-year STH Bruce Jensen said. "Joe, Gavin and John thank you very much for the wonderful meal you gave us tonight. And also for hosting this forum and allowing us the opportunity to voice our views and help make this a better experience. We really appreciate it. Thank you very much."

If you're interested in participating in events like the Kings Open Mic Dinner or any of the exclusive benefits Kings Season Ticket Holders are privy to, click here to learn more about becoming a Kings Season Ticket Holder.

Photo Gallery