Sacramento Kings fans watched the NBA Draft from Elk Grove Thursday with fingers crossed–literally–and jumped to their feet when the team selected University of Kansas forward Thomas Robinson.
The Kings held a at Coach's Bar and Grill, the sports bar inside on Laguna Boulevard.
"I thought we didn't have a chance to get the guy," Elk Grove resident Jared Montoya said, adding that he expected another team to draft Robinson earlier. "I can't wait for the season to start."
Sacramento resident Vincent Ramirez said Robinson's "explosiveness" will pair well with DeMarcus Cousins.
"I think it's an awesome pick," he said.
Some analysts had expected Robinson to be picked earlier, and fans Antonio Mendoza and Fred Shaw were surprised the Kings weren't able to draft Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. Both said Robinson was the next choice on their list.
"I think it'll be more of an exciting team next year," Shaw said.
Several large screens inside Coach's showed the draft and Robinson's brief, tearful interview after he was drafted. Robinson's mother died last year.
Kings guard Marcus Thornton attended the Pins N Strikes event, signing autographs and posing for photos with fans. He told the crowd that he didn't think Robinson would change the dynamics of the team too much.
"We're not trying to put all the pressure on him in his first year," Thornton said.
But some fans in attendance at the Elk Grove event hoped fresh blood will bring a change to the Kings.
"We need defense, times, like 10," Elk Grove resident Kaylyn Rash said.
What do you think of the Kings' draft pick? Let us know in the comment section below.