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NBA returning to Seattle?

After breaking Seattle basketball fans’ hearts by taking the Sonics to Oklahoma City in 2008, investor Chris Hansen, a Seattle native, worked hard to bring the beloved team back to Seattle.

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sacramento kings1SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Maloof family, owners of the NBA’s Sacramento Kings, has reached a deal with a Sacramento investors group to sell the team for a NBA record valuation of $535 million,  The Sacramento Bee reported Thursday night .

The agreement is expected to be announced sometime Friday, The Bee said.

If the NBA approves the deal, escrow is expected to close at the end of May.

DALLAS — The NBA Board of Governors voted 22-8 Wednesday against the sale and relocation of the Sacramento Kings to Seattle.

david stern“Let me say that the Seattle presentation was brisk, firm, excellent and reflects the efforts that were put into this,” NBA Commissioner David Stern said of the offer by Chris Hansen to buy the Kings from the current owners, the Maloof family, and move the team to Seattle.

But the NBA board, which consists of all team owners, voted that the “appropriate outcome was to keep the team in Sacramento and that’s what we did,” Stern said.

The commissioner added that the NBA hopes to “continue a dialogue of some type” with the investors trying to establish a reborn Sonics team in Seattle, but that there was no other team available at this time.

Asked if the board talked about the possibility of expansion, with an eye toward Seattle, Stern said that the board generally agreed to work on the next TV contract for the league before considering expansion, and so that would be at least a year off.

Stern opened the news conference by saying he wanted to make it quick because he had to get “to a game in Oklahoma City,” — the home of the former Seattle Sonics. Ugh.

Hansen issued the following statement:

“While we are obviously extremely disappointed with today’s relocation vote and truly believe we put forth both a significantly better offer and Arena plan, we do thank the league and the owners for their time and consideration and look forward to hearing back on our agreement to join the Maloofs as Limited Partners in the Kings.

“But most of all I would like to thank everyone in Seattle who has been a part of our effort and supported our cause. Words simply can’t express how much your support has meant to me personally and to our City. I truly believe we did everything possible to put our best foot forward in this process and you all should be proud and hold your heads high today.

“Our day will come…and when it does it will just be that much sweeter for the struggle.

“I love you Seattle!”

Sports
05/15/13

Local fans on NBA’s relocation decision

Q13 FOX News

SEATTLE — Mayor Mike McGinn expressed disappointment in Wednesday’s NBA vote to reject the relocation of the Sacramento Kings to Seattle, but pointed out that “a very strong arena plan” is still in place for several years.

mcginn“It would have been great to have had a better result today,” McGinn said just after the announcement. “But at the same time, we’ve got a great city, we’re got a great NBA market, we’ve got a great ownership team, we have a very strong arena plan.”

McGinn went out on a limb when he brought this deal to the public.  It took some selling to get lawmakers to approve $200 million in public bonds for the Sodo district arena, bonds that will be paid back by arena revenue.

Does the mayor believe the deal is dead, or does Seattle still have a chance down the road?

“Hell, ask me what hope I had when I was elected that we’d even be looking at an opportunity like this,” McGinn said. “I’ve always been anticipating some twists and turns and that it’s also a long road.”

McGinn says the city stands ready for the next chance that comes up.  In the meantime, “You have to give credit to Mayor (Kevin) Johnson and Sacramento for fighting to keep their team.”

The arena deal between the city and investor Chris Hansen doesn’t expire for another four years, so an NBA team in Seattle could still happen, but, given Wednesday’s events, not quickly.

Another key supporter of the arena deal, King County Executive Dow Constantine, said, “Today’s NBA vote is disappointing. I’ve gotten to know Chris Hansen and he’s a patient, determined man who is in it for the long run. Fans, our county, and the entire region stand behind this effort.

“The Hansen group has an agreement for a proposed arena, and an energized base of fans and businesses ready to step forward when the time comes. And the time will come. We all need to stay focused on that goal.”

SEATTLE — KJR’s Ian Furness gave his analysis Wednesday of the NBA’s rejection of the relocation of the Sacramento Kings to Seattle, including Commissioner David Stern’s comment that he had to be quick because he had to go watch a game in Oklahoma City — the home of the former Sonics.

SEATTLE — There have been plenty of rumblings the past few days but no new indication of which way the NBA Board of Governors will vote Wednesday on the sale of the Sacramento Kings.

The league’s Finance and Relocation Committee held a conference call Tuesday, but no details were released. The panel unanimously voted last month to recommend the NBA keep the Kings in Sacramento, and so far that’s stayed the same.

However, on Tuesday, a lawsuit was filed in Sacramento Superior Court alleging that the city has broke the law on several fronts in its proposed arena deal — a key factor for the Kings to remain in Sacramento. Meanwhile, another group says it plans on launching a ballot initiative to stop the arena funding.

NBA commissioner: Decision on sale of Kings could be weeks

SEATTLE — As an NBA vote nears on the sale of the Sacramento Kings, a “Bring Back Our Sonics” rally was held on Seattle’s Capitol Hill Monday night that featured former star forward Shawn Kemp.

kemp

Shawn Kemp greeting fans outside the Sonics rally Monday night in Seattle.

NBA.com is reporting that the league’s Finance and Relocation Committee held a conference call Monday and will meet again Tuesday before the final vote by the Board of Governors, which is made up of all the NBA owners. The board is expected to vote Wednesday in Dallas.

The committee earlier voted 7-0 against relocating the Kings team to Seattle, but since that vote, Seattle-backed investor Chris Hansen has increased his offer to buy the Kings by $75 million.

There are also reports of a “backup agreement” between Hansen and the Maloof brothers, who own the Kings, in case the league rules against the sale of the Kings to Hansen. But that remains to be seen. The vote by the NBA board is the most important element in the Kings/Sonics saga.

SEATTLE — As an NBA Board of Governors vote nears on the sale of the Sacramento Kings, a “Bring Back the Sonics” rally was being held on Seattle’s Capitol Hill Monday night.

NBA.com is reporting that the league’s Finance and Relocation Committee held a conference call earlier Monday and will meet again Tuesday before the final vote by the Board of Governors, which is made up of all the NBA owners. The group is expected to vote Wednesday in Dallas.

The committee earlier voted 7-0 against relocating the Kings team to Seattle, but since that vote, Seattle-backed investor Chris Hansen has increased his offer to buy the Kings by $75 million.

There are also reports of a “backup agreement” between Hansen and the Maloof brothers, who own the Kings, in case the league rules against the sale of the Kings to Hansen. But that remains to be seen. The vote by the NBA board is the most important element in the Kings/Sonics saga.

Guests
05/13/13

Sacramento v. Seattle: The saga continues

SEATTLE – The NBA’s Board of Governors meet Wednesday and are expected to make a final decision on whether the Kings will stay in Sacramento or if they will approve the sale of the team to Chris Hansen, allowing him to bring the NBA back to Seattle.

Brian Robinson with Sonicsrising.com discussed the most recent developments in the battle to bring the Kings to the Emerald City.

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