Deal Reached On Sacramento Arena

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The city of Sacramento moved a step closer to a showdown with Seattle by reaching agreement Saturday with private investors to build a downtown arena, mayor Kevin Johnson announced, an important part of the bid to keep the Kings.

The deal with Ron Burkle and Mark Mastrov, the original lead investors of the comeback bid, and now joined by Vivek Ranadive, a Warriors minority owner, had long been expected. Putting a group together that will attempt to buy the team if NBA owners deny the Seattle bid had been expected. And, today’s deal is expected to be approved by the Sacramento city council on Tuesday. These have all been predictable layers to a process of key unpredictable moments.

The news of Saturday and the near-certain upcoming news on Tuesday set the stage for the real developments next month. On April 3, officials from both cities and each group trying to buy the Kings from the Maloof family will be in New York for presentations to owners in advance of the Board of Governors meeting. It is at the Board of Governors gathering April 18-19, after the final certain game in Sacramento on April 17, that a vote will be taken on the agreement the Maloofs reached with the Seattle interest led by Chris Hansen and Steve Ballmer.

If the board – one representative from each team, usually an owner – approves the sale to Hansen-Ballmer, the Kings will be in Seattle next season, likely as the SuperSonics, and the efforts in Sacramento will be moot. But if the work of Johnson and the Ranadive-Mastrov-Burkle bid convinces the board to turn down Seattle, Sacramento would have a plan in place to buy the team and build an arena.

The deal announced Saturday  is for a $448-million downtown arena close to where the city planned to build when it reached an agreement with the Maloofs about a year ago, only to have the family back out of the non-binding agreement after approval by the city council. The vote Tuesday is also non-binding, but with no indication the package would fall apart down the line after the new investors have been involved in negotiations.

19 Comments

  1. SacRoMEnTAL says:

    You know this is BS if Sacremento keeps the team. Kevin Butthurt Johnson could of done this awhile ago. Now the team is sold and the majority owners can do what they want to. Well it would be criminal for the NBA to let them keep the Kings. Where was the NBA when Seattle tried to get a group going to keep the team in Seattle? Well be as it may. Stern promised Seattle an NBA expansion team if we got a new arena. Well we cannot get an expansion team? Fire Hitler!! oops Stern!!

  2. it's me! says:

    All you seattle hopefuls need to read the last sentence in the article i posted below. All these posts about sacramento not having a new stadium deal in place and all the other BS about a deal that none of us know anything about doesn’t mean anything. The Maloofs aren’t the ones who determine where the kings play, the NBA does.

    http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/id/9033497/david-stern-says-sacramento-bid-keep-kings-not-quite-there

  3. Casey says:

    Sacramento has made a great public effort. But everything in their counterproposal is preliminary, non-binding, and has many practical obstacles ahead of it compared to the Seattle offer. That said, Sacramento is putting itself in a great position to receive another relocated team in the next 3 to 5 years and set the NBA up with two billionaire ownership groups to replace currently struggling groups. It’s a win-win for the league.

    Why move the Kings now and not simply point Hansen/Ballmer at another team? Because the NBA needs back into the Seattle market. A multi-sport market has greater media value for every team in it than a single-sport market. OKC did not turn out to be as valuable a market as Bennett expected, and the league is going to be renegotiating its TV contracts in the next few years. With all due respect to Sacramento, the Seattle market is not simply an issue of its size, but in the average consumer spending within that market.

  4. Karl McCray says:

    I think the NBA Board should allow both cities should have a team and move on because this is a lot of headaches. Sacramento all sudden want to build a new area after they heard that their city are them team to leave California. Yes Seattle has been without NBA team too long. Everyone forgot that Seattle had been to the NBA Finals 3 time since they been in the NBA. What about the Kings?

  5. Jason Page says:

    Go Sonics!!!!!!

  6. Jay Pierce says:

    If the NBA didn’t like teams moving, they would’ve stopped this a long time ago. They’ve had so many teams change cities, that it’s becoming a joke. Even the Kings themselves have moved twice. Once from Cincinnati to Kansas City, & then to Sacramento. So don’t talk to me about the fact the NBA doesn’t like teams moving. The Maloofs had a right to sell to anybody they wanted to. Now KJ is mad because they didn’t sell to local intrests. Too bad. I would feel the same if Kohl sold the Bucks to someone would wanted to move team. He (Kohl) has the right to sell to whoever he wants. Every owner does.

    • Dusty says:

      The thing is, why have a team move when they don’t need to??? the Sonics couldn’t obviously hold onto the team they once had……KJ isn’t mad at all, he knows EXACTLY what’s he’s doing. He knows what the NBA is looking for and he knows how to give the what they want….. Seattle might be able to support a team, but when you look at attendance numbers and FAN support over the last couple of decades, you’d realize that Sacramento had the better numbers. They have the best fans, that’s obvious, just ask any NBA team(player) that’s been here, and they will tell you…..No other city would organize as many campaigns as the Kings Fans have just to keep them here….

      Of course if the Kings do move to Seattle, I hope they fail horribly, and I will smile every time they lose :), but my gut feeling Is that they aren’t going anywhere, and KJ will do everything he can to make sure of that…. Where there’s a will there’s a way…

      • Jason Page says:

        Microsoft money will make that team a Championship team! April 3rd will have a recommendation to sell for the BOG to approve and the team will be a contender within a couple of years!

  7. Dan says:

    Sacramento is still waaaaaaay far behind! Were people not expecting Sacramento to have an arena term sheet? Of course they were! This changes nothing. Seattle is way ahead of the game, they knew Sacramento wouldnt just give up. The whole package Seattle is offering is gonna be more then the package Sacramento offers.

  8. ML344 says:

    The Maloofs have already made an agreement to sell to the Hansen/Ballmer group and the $30,000,000 non-refundable payment has been made. I don’t see why the deal shouldn’t go through. Further, the NBA would have a hell of a time getting the Maloofs to sell to the Burkle/Mastrov group given how much they hate Burkle.

    • Jason Page says:

      Very good additional point!

    • Dusty says:

      Well, sure if it was ONLY up to the Maloofs, then the deal would go through, but the NBA has a BIG say on whether a team gets sold or not, and that’s why they are giving KJ and company a chance to come up with a counter offer….If I’m not mistaken, Burkle is only involved in the arena part of the deal, not the actual purchasing of the team. KJ is smart, and he already knows the feelings that the Maloofs have against Burkle, thus, he left Bburkle out of the actual purchasing of the team…Smart move KJ :)

      • Jason Page says:

        Not just Burkle, they seem to have something against that city or government which is weird. The Maloof’s seem to hold some kind of grudge, you would think they would have gone public on sale to give the city and fans that supported them for so long to purchase. Instead, they are not giving Sactown a chance to retain team and they do not have to except any offers since they got 30 million down on purchase. They seem spiteful and desperate for money….

  9. Jay Pierce says:

    I think this plan by KJ is too little too late. They should’ve come up with this a long time ago. The Maloofs have the right to sell to anybody they want. The Seattle group made an agreement to buy the team. Now all of sudden KJ comes up with this plan. The league will open itself up to not only criticism, but to lawsuits. The city of Sacramento blew it. The Hansen group did what it was suppose to do. Don’t punish them for the follow the rules.

    • Dusty says:

      I don’t think it’s too late at all!! That’s why the NBA is giving Sacramento a deadline of April 15th… KJ is a man on a mission, and as long as the Sacramento deal looks good to the NBA, there’s no way they are moving the team. Since the team is STILL in Sacramento, they aren’t going to vote to move it unless the NBA is really disappointed in the Sacramento deal compared to Seattle. Plus, I don’t think KJ is done yet. I think he has more up his sleeve…. the NBA never likes to see a team move, and in my personal opinion, I think they will block the Seattle deal……

      • Jason Page says:

        Sacramento does not have a completed package, not even close. Arena deal is not as complete as Seattle’s arena deal, and it took over a year to get it to that point. More importantly the Maloof family has sold their interest in the team and Sacramento only has buyers that are talking about trying to purchase the team that appears to be unavailable. Sadly the Kings are sold and the Maloof’s do not seem interested in selling locally, if they were they would have made it public that they were going to sell the team.

  10. Brandon says:

    Sac Town not going down without a fight!!!

  11. Jay says:

    Sacramento ain’t playin around. Wow!

  12. Roy says:

    Will this make the Board of Governor think twice in voting no to the Seattle Group? This is last minute stuff right?