Board Of Governors Vote To Keep Kings In Sacramento

From staff and wire reports

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The Sacramento Kings aren’t going anywhere anytime soon.

The saga of the Kings’ future began back in January with an agreement between the Maloof family and Seattle-based investors Chris Hansen and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer that would have sold the team to them. They would then have brought the Seattle SuperSonics back to the NBA after they were relocated to Oklahoma City after the 2007-08 season.

But the Hansen/Ballmer group is coming away empty-handed in its attempt to bring the NBA back to the Emerald City, as the NBA’s Board of Governors voted 22-8 to deny relocation of the franchise, keeping it Sacramento for now.

The NBA’s relocation committee voted 7-0 on April 29 to recommend rejecting the relocation of the team to Seattle, but Hansen’s group tried to sweeten the pot by increasing the franchise’s valuation and offering a record relocation fee as well.

Sacramento’s efforts have been led by software magnate Vivek Ranadive as well as Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, who have worked tirelessly to local and regional businesses and leaders to establish the framework for a new arena for the Kings.

The Ranadive group has a competing deal on the table based on the original franchise valuation of $525 million that Hansen and the Maloofs reached in January.

The Ranadive group has agreed to match the 65 percent price of $341 million for the Kings in that deal, and has put at least 50 percent of that $341 million into escrow. NBA Commissioner David Stern said last month that while the Sacramento bid to keep the Kings at the time was slightly lower than the Seattle bid, the league considered the Sacramento bid binding.

Although there has been substantial buzz in Seattle that there are potential antitrust issues that could be the basis for a lawsuit against the NBA if and when Hansen’s bid is rejected, Hansen’s group apparently remains uninterested in legal remedies upon rejection, according to the source.

Hansen believes that this may be the last time in the foreseeable future that political and business interests in Seattle will be aligned to give support for an NBA bid. The city of Seattle has committed up to $200 million toward construction of a $490 million arena in the city’s SoDo area, next to Safeco Field, where baseball’s Mariners play. Hansen, who has already purchased the land on which he wants to build the arena, would pay the rest.

Sacramento has committed $250 million toward construction of a $447 million arena that would be the centerpiece of a development plan at the current Downtown Plaza mall site.

Ranadive’s group, which includes 24-Hour Fitness founder Mark Mastrov and the Jacobs Family, billionaire owners and managers of the Qualcomm company, has pledged to the NBA that it will not be a revenue sharing recipient if the Kings remain in Sacramento, citing the expected increased revenues the team will be able to get from a new building.

The Sacramento Bee reported this week that the NBA has encouraged the Ranadive group to put the remaining half of the $341 million into escrow as well to alleviate concerns of the Maloofs that the group has the financial wherewithal to complete the transaction.

Information from TNT analyst David Aldridge was used in this report.

56 Comments

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  5. JJP says:

    The Maloof family is working on purchase agreement for next year for 406 million for their 65% of Kings with 50 % down @ 203 million with the Hansen/Balmer group? Just leaked and reported in Seattle.

  6. jose v. says:

    I like how all the seattle fans are mad. You guys already have Mariners and Seahawks. We don’t have any other team besides our minor league baseball team Rivercats and still for now Kings

  7. MJfromOKC says:

    If Seattle ever wants a team should probably keep watching NBA and continue to put potential owners in dialogue with the NBA. Anything short of that will only prove Stern was right to let the NBA leave in the first place. Things have been distorted so much that the NBA top executives had to remind everyone that this was never about Seattle in the first place.

    • JJP says:

      David Stain is on his way out and we do watch the NBA here, We are the #13 market, only 12 teams have a bigger market. The NBA knows the ratings that get from this region already as stated by Stern and Silver recently.

      • JJP says:

        I looked it up, OKC is the 3rd smallest and Memphis is 2nd! Smaller markets in the NBA does not dictate quality like football and baseball and that is okay…

  8. john says:

    Shame on the nba, once again proving greed ismore powerful than fan loyalty…i would put a curse on the kings but i think i am to late.

    • ryansilva01 says:

      How could THIS decision possibly make more money for the league than the Seattle offer? In the short term the NBA owners would have had a windfall of cash (3mill a piece for relocation fees) id they voted to move the team to Seattle, but yet they stuck with the ethical thing to do for less money and you call them greedy? This is the first example of conservative economics I have seen from the NBA since the CBA. I think it sets a great president..

  9. BASKET FAN says:

    They should allow the basketball fans to make the final decision. After all, the team will be better off where there is a more loyal and excited fan base. http://basketball-united.com

  10. Rafael says:

    It’s been a long roller coaster ride since the Maloofs filed for relocation to Anaheim in 2011. We’re almost there Sacramento!!! If Ranadive and co. become our new owners and we get the arena built in downtown Sacramento it will have been well worth the fight!

    #HereWeStay

  11. michael says:

    funny thing is, Sacramento will go back to averaging 2,000 attending per game

    • Tim says:

      Since when have the Sacramento Kings averaged 2,000 per game?

      • JJP says:

        That arena deal is shaky at best! Lawsuits flying, not sure if the city can afford their end what if the MaGOOFS do not sell? Who knows with them, the seem vindictive for some reason? Does anyone know why?

  12. Juan says:

    let’s see if da NEW ARENA DEAL comes thru…cause if it doesn’t go thru…hansen group will likely sit back n say “what happen to da PROMISE”….remember Da Raiders…Same Situation as da kings….re-location back to Oakland…WE’RE PROMISED A NEW STADIUM…Nothin…So I Won’t Be Surprised If Da Kings Play At Dat Arena Forever

  13. Juan says:

    I Wonder If Clay Bennett INFLUENCED David Stern To Reject DIZ DEAL…Bennett Knows He Despised In Seattle….If Deal Went Thru…Bennett Would Have Gone Twice A Yr To Seattle…Which He Didn’t Want

  14. Ben says:

    awful decision. why keep the worst franchise in the nba alongside bobcats, instead of moving to seattle?

    • Tim says:

      Because new owners will make all the difference. Moving the team to Seattle would not make them better if it weren’t for new ownership.

  15. Duv says:

    The NBA Blogtable keeps banning my comment. I’m not a Sonics fan but I wish the Sonics were still in the NBA. OKC will never win an NBA championship! It is KARMA

  16. T Mikulin says:

    Thank you Comissioner Stern and NBA Owners! As a Kings 20 yr Season Ticket Owner, I am very greatful that the Kings are staying in Sacramento! It would have been a tragedy to let the Maloofs sell their 65% Ownership to any Group that would move the Team. The Maloofs have run Our Franchise into the ground, just like all of their Businesses (Palms & Bud Dist.). Our Team Salaries have been among the lowest in the NBA. The Fans of Sacramento are tired of the Maloofs trying to sell the Kings and relocate the Team. I comment the NBA for their process in Relocation and believe this is the correct way in keeping the integerdy to the NBA and all Franchises in place. Imagine the Celtics being sold and relocted to another city just because an owner wanted to.. The NBA knows what it is doing. This was the Right Thing To Do!

    • JJP says:

      They are there But the Maloof’s will own 45% , Hansen 27% and no sale to local ownership just like the Maloof family has said all along.

      • JJP says:

        Market share does not dictate quality!

      • JJPEatsRooster says:

        You must be a very slow person. Hansen will not own anything that has to do with the Kings. The Maloofs will sell to Ranadive, period!! It will not be approved by the NBA, only the original offer was and has been approved by the NBA, other offers, including the one you keep draming about, is not an official offer, and it does not exist to the NBA. PERIOD!!!

      • JJP says:

        Does Vivek Ranadivé and company have any agreement of any kind? Did they bid on the 7% that was in bankruptcy? Do they have all 341 million in escrow? Have they all the land yet? Do you believe everything said in the news? Do you look at facts or just react?

  17. RipSonics says:

    Ive had this username for the past 3 yearsm and I guess it is officially staying now. I’m happy for Kings fans, no hard feelings. But if the Nba allows a city to take our team but stops us from taking another city’s team, then there is something wrong. I think that’s called a double-standard or something.

  18. NorCal says:

    It would have been heartbreaking for this CA capital city to lose its only professional team. Victory to loyal fan bases. Hope Seattle gets a team thru expansion or thru other relocation.

  19. AJ says:

    Kansas City Needs A Basketball Team

    • JJP says:

      How about the Mariners, we would have kept the Sonics in a heartbeat and converted Safeco!

  20. emeraldcity206 says:

    being from seattle, and knowing what it feels like, I can only imagine how happy and relieved Sacramento is. While I was hoping for a team, I am happy for them. What I don’t understand however is the thought process behind the descision and also how blatantly unfair they could be. Seattle didnt get a second chance to make a play for our team, much less a 3rd or 4th (it may not seem like that many, but I’ve been counting). It was one and done. Also, the NBA would be making so much money (not a good thing) and though Sacramento fans might not agree, they would be gaining a hell of a lot of support. They could fill up every seat in the new stadium more than twice with the waiting list for season tickets alone. I really hate the NBA and most of the businessmen who are a part of it. I also don’t get why the first vote for a league expansion was denied. Same deal. Its all ridiculous and stupid and thats everything I have to say

  21. MarkOlsen says:

    I have no problem with keeping the Kings in Sacromento as long as suitable ownership can be found (no, the Maloof’s aren’t it!) and a quality facility/stadium can be built. That means a NEW one.

    HOWEVER, there needs to be a franchise in Seattle. NOW. Seattle SHOULD have a franchise, and has both quality ownership, and the ability to build a quality facility/stadium. Make it happen folks. Seattle deserves the Sonics as much as Sacromento deserves to keep the Kings.

    I am a San Antonio Spurs fan. I don’t want to see small market teams moving. However, when there are credible big city opportunities, they need to be embraced. I’m talking Seattle, as well as Europe in the future. Yes, I’m talking about you, London, England.

  22. Sebas21 says:

    I dont care about Sacramento. I want Seattle Supersonic back in the NBA.

  23. JJP says:

    Maloof family will not sell to Sacramento group! Hansen purchases 20% from Malooff’s and the 7% from Cook’s bankruptcy ? The backup plan ?

  24. Max james says:

    I lived in Sacramento the majority of my life, and never was a big supporter of the kings. But my poor city is dying so fast, the streets are filled with homeless people that never were there before. Vacant buildings everywhere. I feel moving the team would have crippled my hometown even more. Seattle has plenty of other proffesional sports teams, this is all we have.

    • Andy says:

      You can buy those homeless people tickets for games. That one horse town cannot support and NBA team.

  25. tdot416 says:

    that means phil jackson will be joining the raptors

  26. even begic says:

    good. deserved it

  27. AFRO insomiac says:

    Thank you.

    As a loyal Kings fan I cannot wait until we have owners that appreciate how much we support our team.

    We’ve had owners who’ve kept our team in the doghouse for YEARS (no big free agent signing for over 10 years) and yet we still support our KINGS.

    Once we get the right ownership who can feed off of our excitement and put money towards our team (coaching, players, etc() I know we’ll be back to selling out games like back in the day.

    • Dean Daylo says:

      You did absolutely nothing to keep the Kings in Sacramento. Standing around waving a purple “We’re number 1″ foam finger doesn’t count. Thank Kevin Johnson for using the rupee as currency to buy the team. Had Hanson not offer to buy the team Stern would have nothing to extort public funds.

      • Rafael says:

        Had the Maloofs never backed out on the arena deal with Sacramento last season, Chris Hansen and Seatlle would have never been in the picture. Lots of Sacramento fans showed support by other than waving a “We’re number 1″ foam finger. Did you see how many Sacramento fans were in New York on April 3rd for the NBA meetings and the fans in Dallas yesterday? Sacramento fans have stepped up along with Mayor Kevin Johnson.

      • Rohit Singh says:

        Sacramento IS the heart of California and we as the fans have originated team support. So say what you want but I will attend more games knowing we have loyal owners. This is just the beginning. Starting 2013/14 season we will sellout every game and support ranidive. As a kings fan I want to say shukriah to vivek and jeeta raho

  28. Anurag says:

    keep kings in Sacramento

  29. JJP says:

    Are the Maloof family really going to take 65 million less for the team ?

    • JJPEatsRooster says:

      Hey, give it a rest. They Maloof will sell to whover the NBA let’s them sell it to. They are being paid lots more than what they paid for. So just shut your mouth and take a hike!!!

      • JJP says:

        What you eat for dinner does not matter to anyone! The Maloof’s have stated they will not sell to the Sacramento group and I do not see any one of them wanting to taking 65 million less. They have stated they will keep the team, but they need money and minority owners cannot move teams! A 125 million is 20% of 625 million, keeping up? It would be minority interest in the Kings just like Vivek Ranadiv√© has in the Warriors! Maloof family has no interest in talking to Stern either, which they have stated, but you never know with them. Hansen lives in San Francisco, wants to be involved either way and has a local interest in the area. It really only points to the fact that Maloof’s have options and are not happy with trying to be forced to take 341 million! A 125 million now, in a year or so to sell the rest of their 45% interest for 281 million or more, it is their choice. Most of us in the Seattle prefer expansion anyway! The vote was only on relocation, so who knows if they even have finance committee meet next week or not? The Seattle group can afford another team or expansion team either way it goes.

  30. Brendan says:

    Dumb. The NBA has officially lost another Northwest fan. I promise that I am not alone.

    • JJP says:

      Anybody catch David Stain’s comment, in the beginning of news conference, about having to go an OKC playoff game tonight ?

  31. Fernando S says:

    I agree with Board of Governors to keep Kings in Sacramento.

    Seattle go to Oklahoma -
    Kings go to Seattle -

    Who would be next?????

    Dallas? Orlando? New Orleans?

  32. Jon says:

    Hansen and Co need to get some other investors and start a new Professional Basketball League and take on the NBA head to head.

  33. Shawn K says:

    While I really wanted to see the Kings move to Seattle and bring back the Super Sonic name, I’m not mad that they’re staying in Sacramento. I’m still hoping an expansion is in line to have a team in Seattle, they really deserve a NBA team. But congratulations Sacramento, maybe if a deal is done to keep the kings in your town for a while, they’ll actually go somewhere towards a championship. Now for the Seattle fans, don’t lose your hope yet, your time will come to have a NBA team to call your own. just stay optimistic and hope for the best!!

  34. Hugo says:

    Here we stay!!

  35. Daniel Richards says:

    I will never support the NBA in anyway again. I encourage all of the Seattle fans and those tired of Stern to do the same,

  36. Aaron Flores says:

    No!!! Now Sonics is just a memory. I feel sad.