Last night, the New Jersey Nets played their last game ever as residents of the Prudential Center, as they wrapped up a lackluster 22-43 season with a 105-87 spanking at the hands of the Philadelphia 76ers. But Nets fans showed up in force to support their team of lovable losers, most of which will probably be on different teams next season when the Nets move to Brooklyn and open the brand new Barclays Center. Unless Brooklyn wants to keep having lottery picks, in which case Gerald Wallace can check Craigslist for some rentals.
Meanwhile, not everyone in New Jersey was chanting, “Let’s go Nets” last night. Governor Chris Christie was less than pleased when asked about his opinion on the Nets leaving for Brooklyn.
“My message to them is, goodbye,” Christie said at an afternoon news conference at Newark Beth Israel Hospital where he signed a bill to promote organ and tissue donation. “You don’t want to stay, we don’t want you.”
“That’s one of the most beautiful arenas in America they have a chance to play in, it’s in one of the country’s most vibrant cities, and they want to leave here and go to Brooklyn?” he asked. “Good riddance, see you later. I think there’ll be some other NBA team who may be looking to relocate and they might look at that arena and the fan base in the New Jersey and New York area and say, `This is an opportunity to increase our fan base and try something different.”‘ (Via Sports Illustrated)
I’m not quite up to speed on my New Jersey politics – at least not since state leaders shot down my proposal to unleash Koala Chlamydia on the shores – but has Christie even weighed in on the Nets before today? It’s kind of adorable watching Christie stomp his feet as his NBA team leaves for Brooklyn, but does he really think one of the 22 NBA teams reportedly losing money are going to pick Newark over Seattle or Kansas City or anywhere that’s not Newark?
Well, maybe the Charlotte Bobcats would, but Jersey would be better off with a WNBA team.
(Original banner image via Flickr/NJ PAC)