Early Thursday afternoon, the Sacramento Bee reported that the Maloofs are resisting paying predevelopment costs associated with constructing the proposed downtown arena. NBA Commissioner David Stern then issued the following statement:
Following the agreement in principle that was reached on Feb 27 among the City of Sacramento, AEG & the Kings for a new arena, the parties have been attempting to reach agreement on funding the pre-development expenses that must be incurred in order for the project to move forward in a timely fashion. Those discussions have stalled but I have advised Mayor Johnson that the NBA will advance pre-development expenses on behalf of the Kings pending out report to the NBA Board of Governors at its meeting on April 12-13.
Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson also issued a statement of his own late this evening:
The success of the new entertainment and sports complex depends on complete trust and partnership among all parties. It was with that spirit that we all agreed to a deal in Orlando including the Maloof family, who looked an entire room in the eye and promised their commitment to Sacramento. In light of the Maloofs’ promise, we fully expect all parties to live up to their commitments.
A Maloof spokesperson told the Bee that the family “shouldn’t be responsible for the predevelopment expenses” because the Kings would only be a tenant in the city-owned arena. However, as the Bee reported, the owners committed in principle to paying 25 percent of the costs in the non-binding arena term sheet.