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SBD/April 1, 2013/Franchises
NBA Kings Investor Kehriotis Decides Against Putting Together Bid For Team
Published April 1, 2013
BACKDOOR CUT: NBA.com’s Howard-Cooper wrote the Maloofs are “disliked beyond measure in Sacramento,” but they have “received support from the most unlikely of sources: mayor Kevin Johnson.” Johnson has recently “gone out of his way to be complementary toward the Maloofs, notably at his State of the City address and most recently at Tuesday’s city council meeting.” The recent “obvious change of tone toward the Maloofs … smacks of Johnson trying to mend fences, just in case.” Sacramento may “still need to make nice with the family.” There is the “recent evidence that Johnson has, after the mayor and his top aides wrongly let earlier arena negotiations get personal when they should have understood the Maloofs are very emotional.” To suggest the Maloofs “want the Kings to end up in Sacramento, not Seattle, is the purest sign of all that KJ is schmoozing” (NBA.com, 3/28).
WHALE OF A TALE: In Sacramento, Reese & Bizjak in a front-page piece noted the campaign to keep the Kings in Sacramento “has developed into a larger civic plan, with some of California's richest business leaders promising to inject money and energy into the neglected heart of the capital city.” City officials said that they “see the so-called whales as white knights who will dramatically remake downtown by buying the Kings, building an arena at the Downtown Plaza site and surrounding it with offices, retail, housing and a hotel.” City Manager John Shirey said, "This is every city's dream to have this many investors with this much capital behind them with this much interest in investing in our city and our downtown specifically" (SACRAMENTO BEE, 3/31).