IMO.... Don't ask. They will flat out say "no"... They don't want to lose 1 red cent anywhere on anything, and are rather annoying in this regard. If you have a smaller camera bag take that. No need for the full kit. If it's more likely to pass without notice, go for it. Just go EARLY. Early enough that if they absolutely say "NO!" at the doors you can go lock it in your car, get back, and still not miss anything.

I wouldn't take anything more than a 200mm on the high end (or maybe a 2x converter with the 200 -- but this eats up light) because you don't want to be obtrusive.

Question I'd have is: Do you just want some pictures for fun? Or are you really trying to capture some epic serious shot of players in the middle of a game?

If the first, then take a light kit (no flash -- you can say "hey, it doesn't even have a flash!" to try and plead your case if they object) and have some fun.

If the second, then maybe go about it more seriously, get permission, or go to a college game or a high school game and look for similar passion/setting/gameplay to get that epic shot.

I took my AE-1P into the opera for the Nutcracker this winter. Would have been fine if the people IMMEDIATELY off my left hand side hadn't started the flash going on their digital P&S. Next thing usher goes around saying put that away please.

Oh well, I got a few shots of the room before the show started and before that. Thing is to remain unobtrusive. Remain polite, calm, but just don't flaunt it. That's my philosophy with events and photos.

Of course, throw that out the window if the event is outside.