The Sacramento Kings' new AEG Sports Complex Arena faces a key vote in the Sacramento City Council on Tuesday that could determine whether the team stays in Sacramento or moves down south to Anaheim.
According to The Los Angeles Times, the Sacramento City Council will vote Tuesday on two measures that could determine whether the Kings stay in the city. The Times says the proposed arena, a sports and entertainment complex which has received financing interest from Anschutz Entertainment Group, would cost about $387 million.
It's a shift for the franchise from as recently as May, and it gives fans of the franchise some hope. In early May, it appeared almost certain the Kings would head to Anaheim after the 2011-12 season, but owners Joe and Gavin Maloof had expressed their determination to keep the team in Sacramento.
We have respect for the community, George Maloof, a partner with his brothers, told The Times in May. ... We're going in with blind faith.
Last Friday, the Sacramento Bee reported that AEG had expressed interest in providing assistance to Sacramento mayor Kevin Johnson and the Think Big Sacramento Coalition in building a new arena in the city.
The breakdown, according to NBC: On Tuesday, the council will decide whether to approve, table or reject $550,000 in spending for lawyers and consultants to vet the project and negotiate a proposed arena with the NBA and the Maloofs. It would make sense, then, that if there was opposition among the council, the project would be shelved in the first step rather than wasting $550,000.
If that is approved, negotiations ensue to determine how much private and public funding will split up the project, according to NBC.
Of course, the project still has a long way to go. Anaheim has the NBA-ready Honda Center, where the Kings would share an arena with the NHL's Anaheim Ducks. And Las Vegas, which has been yearning for a professional sports team, was mentioned as a possible relocation destination earlier this year. Those rumors seemed to fizzle, though, and Anaheim became the most likely spot.
The Sacramento mayor Johnson has a vested interest in keeping the Kings around. A 14-year NBA veteran, he likely does not want to lose the city's only professional team under his watch.