SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — Sacramento Kings and Monarchs players gave their final farewells to Sleep Train Arena this weekend.
For many of the players, being surrounded by fans and well-wishers really wasn’t really anything new to them. But Saturday, the atmosphere was a little bit different.
“Man, you know what? It’s been 26 years. And it feels like it was just yesterday,” former Monarchs player Ruthie Bolton told FOX40.
“As soon as we came out of here, 17,000 people would explode,” recalled former Kings player Doug Christie.
Reliving memories of their yesteryears, when the then known Arco Arena was home to the Sacramento Kings and Monarchs for many seasons.
“Just going through a lot of memories. Different plays, different situations, different games, just reliving those memories,” said former Kings player Brad Miller.
Those who spent countless hours enjoying good times at the venue got to see the arena one last time and say good-bye.
“There isn’t a Sacramentan who hasn’t been part of this community for decades, who doesn’t have incredible memories of experiences here at, I know it’s Sleep Train, Arco Arena,” said Sacramento
Mayor Darrell Steinberg.
“I was a young, single mom in this town, and coming here was a real treat, my dad brought me here a lot,” said Sacramento Vice Mayor Angelique Ashby.
Olympic gold medalist and former Monarchs star Ruth Bolton told FOX40 the legacies of so many gifted players began in Sacramento.
“What we did here was bigger than basketball. Everything we’re doing is bigger than the game, but the game is awesome,” said Bolton.
The Kings are still on the quest to get those championship rings for Sacramento.
“It’s going to happen. It will. And when it does, right on the bottom down there, just put Arco. Because that would be so very fitting,” Christie said.
“This is a song to all ya’ll, to Sleep Train,” Bolton said before singing. “What a difference you made in our lives. What a difference you made in our lives. You have played so many parts. What a difference you made.”