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SBD/January 15, 2013/Franchises
Sources: NBA Holds Conference Call To Outline Deal Points Of Proposed Kings Sale
Published January 15, 2013
HOPE FOR SACTOWN? NBA.com's Scott Howard-Cooper wrote if the Maloof family sells the Kings to the Hansen-Ballmer group, Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson will be "down to his final hope: The Board of Governors, one representative from each team, either an owner or high-ranking executive as proxy, refusing to approve." Such an outcome would be "very rare, and maybe even unprecedented." Johnson in essence would be "urging owners to deny the bid of a group that by every indication has the financial resources and wants to CPR new life into a floundering franchise by moving it to a city with major corporate backing and a tradition of supporting sports" (NBA.com, 1/14).
THE PEOPLE HAVE SPOKEN: In Sacramento, Lillis, Kasler & Bizjak report Kings fans yesterday "launched a website asking people to make nonbinding commitments to purchase season ticket packages in a new Sacramento arena should new owners emerge here for the Kings." Meanwhile, a petition asking NBA Commissioner David Stern to "allow a local ownership group the opportunity to match a bid by interests seeking to move the Kings to Seattle eclipsed 7,700 signatures." If a new ownership group "keeps the team in town and builds a new arena, the list will be given to the Kings' sales staff." As of late yesterday, more than 2,100 fans said that they would "buy tickets at a total value of more than $7.3 million" (SACRAMENTO BEE, 1/15). A SACRAMENTO BEE editorial states in part, "The possible bidders who are lining up to keep the Kings in Sacramento deserve serious consideration from the NBA and the team's current owners." The ownership groups have to "prove their financial muscle, and their proposals need to be fully developed and vetted." Nonetheless, it is "encouraging that potential investors have stepped forward." Many in Sacramento are "justifiably sick and tired of the Kings soap opera." They "would not shed many tears if the team left." But it is "well worth a little more angst to see if there's a plausible path to keep the Kings in Sacramento, with new, committed owners and without too much public expense" (SACRAMENTO BEE, 1/15).