Maloof backs Seattle bid for Kings before NBA
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
NEW YORK — Hedge fund manager Chris Hansen outlined the financial terms, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer expressed Seattle’s enthusiasm for bringing an NBA team back to the city and Sacramento Kings owner George Maloof Jr. “expressed strong support for moving forward with the deal that they’ve made with Chris Hansen,” Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn said.
In a presentation on Wednesday to an NBA joint committee made up of owners and team representatives, the Seattle group made its formal to buy the Kings from the Maloof family, move the franchise to Seattle and rename the team the Seattle SuperSonics.
Hansen and Ballmer did most of the talking, according to McGinn, but the Seattle group was also represented by McGinn, King County Executive Dow Constantine along with investors Peter and Erik Nordstrom and former NBA player and team executive Wally Walker.
Also present in the Seattle presentation were Sacramento Kings owners Joe, Gavin and Phil Maloof, members of the family who own the Kings.
The Seattle group made its presentation to a joint committee of NBA governors from the advisory finance and relocation committees, and the Sacramento group followed.
The committee is comprised of 12 NBA owners or governors: San Antonio Spurs’ Peter Holt, Minnesota Timberwolves’ Glen Taylor, Miami Heat’s Micky Arison, Oklahoma City Thunder’s Clay Bennett, New York Knicks’ Jim Dolan, Boston Celtics’ Wyc Grousbeck, Utah Jazz’s Greg Miller, Phoenix Suns’ Robert Sarver, Indiana Pacers’ Herb Simon, Toronto Raptors’ Larry Tanenbaum and Los Angeles Lakers’ Jeanie Buss.
NBA Commissioner David Stern and deputy commissioner Adam Silver, who will replace Stern on Feb. 1, 2014, were also in attendance.
A decision on which group will buy the Kings is not expected until the NBA’s Board of Governors convene April 18-19 New York for their annual spring meeting.
The purpose of today’s meetings gave Seattle and Sacramento the opportunity to present a case as to why they should buy the Kings. The joint committee also had a chance to ask questions, and the committee will also take time to discuss both presentations privately.
Vivek Ranadive, Ron Burkle, Mark Mastrov, Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson and California Sen. Darrell Steinberg represented the Sacramento group.