NBA won’t decide on Sacramento/Seattle situation this week

Cue the sea of moans from both Sacramento and Seattle.

The fate of the Sacramento Kings won’t be decided this week after all.  The NBA is tabling the vote on the sale and relocation of the Kings for another week or maybe longer.

League spokesperson Tim Frank confirmed the news to Cowbell Kingdom.

At a press conference addressing an agreement reached between the city of Seattle and Chris Hansen to have KeyArena NBA ready for next season, Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn speculated that a vote could come in one or two weeks.  According to the Seattle Times, McGinn came to his conclusion about the process following a conversation with NBA Commissioner David Stern yesterday.

Currently, the NBA has no timetable set for when it will make a final decision.

Following a press conference of his own featuring Sacramento’s investors, mayor Kevin Johnson revealed that a written, binding offer from the Sacramento group would be submitted to the NBA by tomorrow.  The mayor said that lawyers are currently in the process of reviewing the Sacramento bid led by software magnate Vivek Ranadivé.

“It’s ultimately how the NBA runs that process,” Johnson said when asked for clarification on binding the proposed Sacramento bid.  “I’m just not privvy to how that works.  I know what we have to do on our end.  What we have to do on our end is get a commitment in writing and give it to the NBA – and that means the Maloofs and the NBA.  How they go about that, I do not know that.”

But will they match the increased offer by Hansen and the Seattle group?  On Friday, the prospective SuperSonics owner raised his offer by approximately $17 million to purchase controlling interest of the Kings.  Hansen and the Maloofs agreed to the adjusted deal based on a $550-million valuation of the franchise.

“When we were looking at doing everything that what we needed to do, we knew what was out there at the 525 (number),” Johnson said.  “The last ditch effort by Chris Hansen’s group – he certainly has the prerogative to do that.”

Johnson wasn’t very concerned about the recent developments out of the Pacific Northwest. When asked, the mayor seemed to brush off the idea that the Sacramento investors needed to raise their bid.

“We felt that we made good on what we said we were going to do,” Johnson said.  “I think the NBA and the Maloofs are comfortable with that and then ultimately, they”ll have to make a decision,” the mayor added.  “So I can’t get into all the details at this point.  It’s really up to the NBA.”

Prospective Kings ownership congregates at site of proposed arena

Johnson, city officials, key members of the prospective Kings ownership group and a few of the team’s current limited partners congregated at the Downtown Plaza this afternoon.  Here are a few quotes from several of them that spoke.  Video of the entire press conference can listened to below.

Vivek Ranadivé

When Mayor Johnson asked me to help with the Kings, I knew that there was some things that were bigger than any one person.  And keeping the Kings in Sacramento was exactly that.

Mark Mastrov

Without the mayor, we’re not here today.  I’d like to congratulate him on basically driving us all and forces us.  He’s probably the greatest salesperson I’ve ever met.  He’s phenomenal, I’m sure this isn’t his last stop…

Councilman Steve Hansen, who represents the district where the arena will be built

This is a historic time in our city.  And I think everybody will look back to this as an inflection point for when this city had its second renaissance.

Former San Francisco 49ers great Roger Craig, works with Ranadivé at TIBCO

You know, I played eight years up in Rocklin.  I know how passionate you guys are to sport.  I’m just happy I can be part of this event…

Mitch Richmond

I remember there was times that we had terrible teams here, but you guys always came out and supported the team.  And so this is an opportunity, and I think Kevin Johnson has done a tremendous job of building a team, of building a great team to give back to the fans and give you guys your team back.

Paul Jacobs

There are also some personal connections that are in play here.  My wife was actually born in Sacramento, so this is a hometown team for my family.  Vivek actually worked at our father’s first company, so there’s a great connection to Vivek too.  And KJ used to school us on the basketball court at Cal too.

Mark Friedman

For so many years, (Sacramento) we’ve been close.  We’ve been on the edge.  We just haven’t gotten there.  Well that’s about to change.  This is the moment.

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About: Jonathan Santiago

Jonathan Santiago serves Cowbell Kingdom as senior editor specializing in writing, podcasting and video production. He also handles the majority of CK’s day-to-day beat coverage of the Kings.