KANSAS CITY, Mo. — In the midst of another blockbuster NBA finals, Kansas City, and its rabid base of basketball fans, are once again on the outside looking in.
“It would mean a lot to have a team here,” Robbie Poulain, a Lenexa graphic designer said.
Poulain is longing for the return of the Kansas City Kings.
“I feel like the culture here has kind of grown a lot in terms of basketball,” Poulain said. “Look at the players we've produced from Landry Shamet, to Willie Cauley-Stein. Then we've got Ochai [Agbaji] coming up.”
Graphic designing for the Kansas City Royals by day, Poulain’s off-time hobby is bringing Kansas City’s latest NBA franchise to life.
“Although we still don't have a team back, I created one for fun,” Poulain said in a tweet on June 5.
I've been a big NBA fan most of my life. Since I was a kid, I've always dreamed about the NBA returning to my hometown, Kansas City.— Robbie Poulain (@Robbie_Poulain) June 6, 2022
Although we still don't have a team back, I created one for fun.
Check it out!https://t.co/J8PvlRCYm6 pic.twitter.com/9XenY3y0tm
The brainchild of nearly two years of work and procrastination, Poulain’s design for the KC Reign features four different jersey mock-ups, a complete style and logo guide and faux game-day images at downtown KCMO’s T-Mobile Arena.
“The amount of enthusiasm that fans bring on a nightly basis separates Kansas City from most sports towns in my opinion,” he said.
This childhood dream was nearly a reality, with KCMO in the running to host the displaced Toronto Raptors in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.
"If the Toronto Raptors have to play elsewhere, Kansas City is the most attractive place they can pick in the United States of America,” KCMO Mayor Quinton Lucas said in October 2020.
Attempts to bring the league have yielded little fruit in recent years. The Athletic reports an upcoming WNBA expansion will not include Kansas City.
Alas, Poulain provides hope for KC hoop heads.
“I hope it inspires every kid who likes the league but doesn’t have a team to root for,” he said.
For the full Kansas City Reign design concept, people can visit this link.