Kings owners met with Anaheim Ducks owner about move

Those Anaheim Kings rumors got a smidge more believable yesterday, as Sacramento radio station KFBK reports that Kings owners Joe and Gavin Maloof met “recently” with Anaheim Ducks owner Henry Samueli to discuss a move south:

The plan as told to me includes moving the Kings to the Honda Center in Anaheim. Samueli will give the Maloof’s 100-million dollars to pay off some debt as well as help pay off territorial rights to the Clippers and Lakers. Should the Maloofs default on that loan, then Samueli would assume some control of the team. What is not clear is how much control Samueli would get.

Also not clear: What the lease would look like at Anaheim’s Honda Center, and whether there’d be enough revenue to go around to make both the Maloofs and Samueli happy. (According to KFBK, the two sides met previously in early 2010, but the Maloofs didn’t like Samueli’s proposal.) Also, who told KFBK’s Rob McAllister (he just says “a source”) that this was the plan — this could be Samueli leaking it to try to build momentum for an Anaheim move, the Maloofs leaking it to try to scare up support for a new Sacramento arena, or something else entirely. Just because two sides met to discuss a move doesn’t necessarily mean they found anything to agree on.

In other news, as the Ball Don’t Lie blog headlines it, “Kings to name arena after sham energy bracelets.” Now that’s the kind of publicity for your product you just can’t buy. Oh wait, you can.

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12 comments on “Kings owners met with Anaheim Ducks owner about move

  1. With the desperation expressed in the naming rights agreement the Maloof’s just signed for the formerly Arco Arena and their reported money woes, I don’t think they’d look any gift horse in the mouth. Even if they’re not fond of Samueli’s proposal. If the Lakers and Clippers will accept the buyoff, this move seems very likely to happen. Because as of right now there’s 0 chance of a new arena in Sac since the city won’t pay and the Maloof’s are broke.

  2. I agree that it depends how desperate the Maloofs are for cash. Though in that case you have to wonder if it doesn’t make more sense just to sell the team outright. (Unless the labor agreement uncertainty is making NBA teams hard to sell, which is possible.)

  3. Part of it is undoubtedly emotional too. They’ve been quoted as saying they’ll do all the can to hold on to the team. Sometimes people are irrational about their toys. This move would give them the money they need to pay off some debt without having to give up their toy, which after they lose the majority of the Palms may seem like a good deal for them since it leaves them a chance to keep something (for now).

  4. I can’t imagine that the Lakers and Clippers are just going to LET the Kings in their backyard without a hefty imdemnity fee. Given that the Maloofs seem to be in dire straits (well, as dire as it gets for rich people who are in fact still rich) I seriously doubt they can afford that. No Anaheim for the Kings.

  5. I view the Anaheim “offer” as one of several they’ve probably had. Remember, the Maloofs met with the powers-that-be in Seattle in July to share with those powers the secret to getting a new arena — as if the Maloofs are experts at that. Or, you know, maybe that meeting was about something else? Nah, couldn’t be.

    I think we have interest from Ballmer, Ellison and Samueli, which is exactly what the Maloofs want — three billionaires who have all expressed a desire to get an NBA team.

    Add to this the reports that the Maloofs are in way over their heads with the Palms, and it’s clear something has to go. The Maloofs get to keep either the Kings or the Palms, but they can’t have both (unless they sell their souls, which is what Power Balance looks like to me).

    With the Maloofs no longer in complete control of their financial vehicle, it’s hard to tell on which side of the icy highway they’ll spin out. All we know now is a spinout is inevitable.

    I hope Seattle gets this team. I think they deserve it.

  6. Marty, based on that article it seems it would be Samueli not the Maloofs paying off the Lakers and Clippers. So Anaheim is still very much a possibility.

  7. I don’ t know what’s going to happen But I really hope all the best for the Maloof’s. They were hit just as everyone was in the fall of the economy.

    But as for keeping one or the other its well known that George Jr and Phil Maloof own the Palms and the rest of the family has shears in the hotel and work as employees of the Maloof INC.

    And Joe and Gavin own the Kings and the Maloof family works in that business together as well but the family dosnt own them together there owned by deferent family members there for if the Palms sells the owners have nothing on the kings and both are not at risk to be taking from the Maloof’s. I hope if they move its to Seattle we miss our Sonics But I’d hope that ment the Maloof’s stay owners or part. People are acting stupid to think they wont move. Well Seattle learned that lesson the hard way and are now kicking them selves we’d be happy to build them a new arena.

  8. Maybe the Maloofs wanted advice from Samueli about how to handle stock options? If i were them i’d stay away from socal and falling into a No. 3 pecking order and head north or east… seattle and kc are much more deserving.

  9. You don’t think the Kings would immediately jump the Clippers in the pecking order? Considering they’d have their own area within the greater LA area as well as their own arena I find it hard to believe they wouldn’t leapfrong the wayward Clippers. Particularly when you consider the “new” factor when they first arrive.

  10. I think the City of Anaheim would easily support the team because Orange County is home to 3 million people. Plus Los Angeles has enough of the television market like New York City to support it. The Clippers won’t be going anywhere with Blake Griffin lighting up the court and one of the most exciting rookies to ever enter the NBA.

    A drive from Orange County to Staples Center to catch a 7:30pm game is no easy task. I also think the Kings would have to change the team name, probably back to the Royals because of the L.A. Kings and I’m sure Samueli wouldn’t want an NBA team sharing his Honda Center to be named after the biggest rivals they have in the NHL.

    I also wouldn’t be surprised once the Nets move to Brooklyn, NY that an NBA team moves to Newark, NJ. I suspect a lot of relocating teams in the next decade. Kings first, Hornets possibly second, Bucks third and Pacers last, as they are all teams that have financial troubles that may need a new market or lease agreement to make them profitable.

  11. @Dan – I don’t think there will be any new factor for the Kings if they end up in Anaheim. It’s basketball, many have seen a game or two and unless they can tie themselves into a Disney movie I think they’ll lack that cool cache.

    That or they move in time to launch a dynasty that gives the Lakers a run for their money.

    @kombayn – I’ve been to Anaheim twice in my life and both times I would’ve killed to see the Staples Center (basketball or hockey) or even a Dodgers game and was struck at how far the drive was. So I agree this might make some sense for Anaheim.

    Does that translate to ticket sales? Time will tell but it does pose a risk for the team formerly known as the Kings.

  12. I tell you, it’s now moving full-speed ahead. This is the first time they’ve reacted this way:

    I’m sure they’ll say the responses to the Power Balance agreement profoundly hurt their feelings.

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