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Sacramento Officials To Begin NBA Kings Arena Negotiations With Mastrov-Burkle Group
Published March 5, 2013
KEYS TO THE CITY: NBA.com's David Aldridge wrote the Maloofs still own the Kings, and that holds "significant sway among NBA owners." Owners "do not like to tell other owners to whom they should sell their teams." Sources said that they "believe the ultimate decision on where the Kings will play next season won't be made by the owners on the finance or relocation committees." Aldridge wrote, "The final call is, and remains, the Maloofs' to make." But that "doesn't mean the Maloofs couldn't ultimately decide to change their minds and swing their backing away" from the Seattle group led by hedge fund manager Chris Hansen and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, if they are "blown away by the Mastrov/Burkle deal." Aldridge: "I believe the league, ultimately, wants to wash its hands of the Maloofs. And I think [NBA Commissioner David] Stern is genuine in his desire to give Sacramento a legitimate, fair shot at arguing its position to the Board of Governors." The Maloofs "aren't stupid," and they "know that selling to Mastrov means Burkle can make out big time, if the arena deal indeed is the economic catalyst for a revitalized downtown" (NBA.com, 3/4).