NBA on Kings move: Reply hazy, ask again later

Let’s set the Wayback Machine for March 26, when Sacramento had just approved a preliminary term sheet for a new Kings arena:

That was a total guess, but it’s looking pretty good after yesterday’s announcement that the NBA is postponing its vote on whether to allow the Kings to move to Seattle. The league didn’t give a reason why, or indicate how long the delay will last. Instead, two committees made up of “a select group of about a dozen team owners,” according to the Sacramento Bee, are meeting today at an undisclosed location in New York to review the Sacramento and Seattle proposals, and will make recommendations to the full league.

This could just be a procedural move designed to keep every owner in the league from having to read all the financial documents involved, or it could be a stalling measure so that the NBA can see what else the two sides come up with for upping the ante. Guess we’ll find out more after today. Or, more likely, after what happens today leaks out a week from now.

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21 comments on “NBA on Kings move: Reply hazy, ask again later

  1. Yeah, again, as long as two warring parties are continuing to pile cash in your outstretched palm, why would you say whoa?

    It’s just checkbooks at dawn.

    Interesting tidbit on the radio the other day… the Maloofs have contacted Gary Bettman about an NHL team to play in “a new arena to be built by AEG in Las Vegas”.

    Yeah, well….

  2. You should trust George Maloof re: ice rink games in desert. He’s a developer (although I haven’t found any successful developments of his).

  3. If you had to guess at this point, would the Kings stay in Sacramento or move to Seattle? Reading the articles on this website, I am not sure what will happen.

    As for George Maloof wanting an NHL team in Las Vegas, I would say good luck with that when you have another failing franchise in the desert who could be on their way to Seattle and realistically, how many people would attend NHL games in Las Vegas when it’s a gambling destination for tourists? I don’t think that many would go there to see an NHL game for this reason.

  4. Minor news in Seattle sports – The Mariners bought large stake of local RSN, two years before their current deal was set to expire. Hansen may have missed chance to be in driver’s seat on that revenue issue.

  5. According to Elliotte Friedman the NHL has denied that report of the Maloofs owning an NHL Team.

    Here is the exact quote from his column:
    The NHL denied a Sacramento Bee report that the Maloof brothers, who are trying to sell the NBA Kings, are trying to get a hockey team in Vegas. The league was surprised by the report, saying they haven’t met or discussed that possibility in five years. (Thought #27)

  6. I honestly don’t have a clue how the decision will go at this point. I could tell you which city I think makes more sense, but I don’t have a vote, and the 30 guys who do may not be thinking the same way I am.

    It’s really fascinating to watch, actually. Can anyone remember the last time we had two cities openly bidding like this for the rights to host a team?

  7. “…two cities openly bidding like this for the rights to host…”

    A little reminiscent of the final round of the Olympics process, albeit more public in the back-and-forth. And that always works out with the choice that makes more sense, right?

  8. To be clear once again, there are bylaws and contract laws that govern this process as well. The NBA isn’t a country; it operates under US and Canadian laws.

    The Sacramento group has assembled a backup plan to be used in the event that the BOG can figure out a legal reason to completely block Hansen’s effort and signed PSA. Now, does anyone see a legal reason to completely block the PSA? That’s the question everyone should be asking.

    If it turns out that everyone in Seattle has to surrender their first-born children, that would be a great reason to reject this PSA. Can anyone foresee something like this on the horizon? Because since the NBA helped the Maloofs and Hansen construct this contract, I doubt there are any show-stoppers at all.

  9. Purely conjecture, but I think this delay significantly favors Sac. The NBA has been vetting the H/B/N group and offer since January, which is more than enough time to determine this ownership group and Seattle’s potential to be an NBA city. Why the delay?

    I hope I’m wrong, but I think this is good news for Sac.

  10. Oh, and “delay” is the wrong word. The NBA changed its own bylaws in January; they now require a minimum of 7 days between the committee recommendation and the BOG vote.

    Min, 7 days; max, 30 days.

    It’s only the media that keeps calling this a delay. It’s not; it’s the NBA following its own bylaws. This established-in-bylaws waiting period favors no one.

    Michael McCann explains this in his Twitter feed.

  11. News (via Twitter, of course) now gradually coming out. Sacramento’s bid was, apparently, not impressive. They might be back to settling this in the minimum 7 days.

    I’m sure KJ is working on a way to spin this as a win.

  12. KJ will harp on the arena deal, more public money than Seattle. That’s how they expected to “match” Seattle. Like everything else that Sacto produced, the bid was a term sheet. Hansen has two offers on the table: one for the 5% and the binding higher value bid for 65% of the team. seattle is pulling away.

  13. It’s a non-binding terms sheet Sac submitted. They’d need at least a council vote to have a set of binding documents. Even Seattle’s MOU isn’t really a “binding” document yet, more of a solid set of points to be folded into the binding document.

    It’s not like Sac would put a deposit down without submitting a purchase contract either, so saying they will is about the level it should be at.

    MIkeM, based on the article you linked to, I don’t see this as any new news either way…. they followed up with submitting their offer/contract framework to the NBA BoG.

  14. ChefJoe, it was in the tweets and comments that were being generated. Should have been more clear. Bee seems to have updated that article now, though.

    Sorry for the confusion.

  15. Maloofs have sent a letter to the NBA saying, in effect, Please proceed with the Hansen deal — that’s the one we want.

    They can’t even negotiate with the Sac group right now, but it sounds like they don’t want to.

  16. So David Stern agrees with Neil and says they may keep ruminating over this until May. Two cities’ NBA fans see sudden spike in anxiety medication prescriptions/alcohol consumption.

  17. I just looked at the Sacramento Bee article and from the sounds of things, it is extremely difficult to say what will happen at this time. Maybe we will find out some more information before the end of this workweek. The board of governors meetings tomorrow & Friday will be interesting for sure.

  18. I guess those owners with big stars, who’s contracts are about to expire, don’t want the happy-to-pay-the-luxury tax Ballmer driving up the costs of those contracts, and the rest of their payroll.

    Then there is always the good idea of having a team in the Capital of California. There is much lobbying the NBA, and sports business, do in Sacramento; having a team in Sacramento helps.

    Then, the Seattle market for the NBA is not better than the Sacramento market; and Seattle is possibly a worse market.

    Then, the BOG maybe just personally can’t stand Hansen and Ballmer. It would be real easy to look at the way these two act and want to have nothing to do with them.

  19. How have Hansen and Ballmer been acting that is so reprehensible? As the saying goes, nothing personal, its just business. If there is one thing the NBA owners have an allegiance to (because it sure isn’t their cities, their players, or their fans) its money.

  20. Hansen and Ballmer aren’t trustworthy. They rely on lobbying and PR, instead of up-front telling the truth. The arena proposal and events in Seattle show that.
    Hansen cherry picks facts and then presents them as the whole truth. Hansen and Ballmer never explain the discrepancies of what they present in comparison to facts. Hansen and Ballmer rely on PR marketing. This means that nothing that comes out of their mouth has more credibility than a television commercial.

    Hansen and Ballmer made presentations at the owners meeting earlier this month. A Sports article came out that purported to give the presentation Hansen gave to the owners. It was flagrant cherry picked marketing, presented with marketing rhetoric. There was nothing even to back up Hansen’s contentions. I would think that any of the owners that were businessmen, and not inheritance brats, would have seen through Hansen in two seconds.

    So, what is reprehensible is Hansen and Ballmer not acting in an honest, or honorable, fashion.

  21. Fascinating to watch this unfold … and also interesting to compare to the botched sale of the NHL’s Phoenix Coyotes in 2009. At that time the owner of the Coyotes, Jerry Moyes, had a deal to sell the team to Jim Balsillie who intended on relocating the franchise to Hamilton, Ontario. Of course, since their deal was to play out in bankruptcy court and bypass the NHL’s BoG, the league fought the sale tooth and nail and owns the team to this day.

    Considering how in a potential relocation the NBA has helped vault its franchise values (instead of owning one indefinitely), Mr. Bettman must be watching the Sac/Sea bidding war and reevaluating his league’s approach to the Coyotes’ sale.

    Interestingly enough there’s a chance Seattle may “adopt” the NHL franchise too …

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