A decision on the future of the Sacramento Kings is almost here.
Two groups of Sacramento and Seattle investors have been competing for the right to have the team in their city. The Maloof family agreed to sell the team to the Seattle group in January, accepting a $341 million offer. However, the bid has yet to be approved by the NBA.
On Friday, the Sacramento group, led by mayor Kevin Johnson, may have their last chance to keep the Kings in California. The Maloofs have set Friday as the deadline for Johnson’s investor’s to match Seattle’s offer. If the league ends up rejecting the Seattle group, the Maloofs might accept an equal offer to keep the team where it is.
Johnson says developer Mark Friedman has joined the effort to the keep the team in Sacramento. Friedman replaces billionaire Ron Burkle, who recently left the group.
If the mayor and former NBA star wants to keep the Kings where they’ve been since 1985, the group may have to exponentially increase their offer to the Maloofs. A source tells ESPN that their initial offer was “not even close” to Seattle’s bid.
Even if Friedman’s involvement is able to help the group match Seattle’s offer, they will still have to pay the Seattle investors an additional $30 million -- that’s how much the Seattle group put down as a non-refundable deposit when they first made the deal with the Maloofs.
Both sides presented their arguments to David Stern last week, looking to get approved for a deal. The NBA Board of Governors will ultimately decide to whom the Maloofs are allowed to sell the team.