Sale of Sacramento Kings twists and turns
Despite repeatedly dismissing overtures from a Sacramento group eager to buy the Kings, the team's owners have not closed the door on that possibility and were receiving updates from the NBA on the Sacramento group's efforts as recently as this weekend, a source said Sunday.
The team "still has that option," said a source with knowledge of the Maloof family's thinking.
As they head into what could be a historic NBA meeting Wednesday and conferences today on the Kings future, however, the Maloofs continue to make it clear they prefer to cement a deal with the Seattle group led by hedge fund manager Chris Hansen.
Hansen and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer have agreed to pay the Maloofs and their partner Bob Hernreich the unprecedented sum of $406 million for the 65 percent of the team they control – a figure that was increased Friday for the second time. The deal includes a promise by the Seattle group to pay a $116 million relocation fee, the highest in league history.
The Sacramento investors, in contrast, have stuck with their original offer of $341 million.
Since the NBA's relocation committee recommended against allowing the team to move to Seattle, the Maloofs and their Seattle suitors have come up with an alternative proposal – leaked Saturday – that would keep the team here for now but bring the Seattle investors in as minority partners with the Maloof family.
Reported by ony Bizjak, Dale Kasler and Ryan Lillis of the Sacramento Bee