NEW YORK CITY - Sacramento Kings majority owner George Maloof said he's ready for the relocation process to be over and is fine with whatever the NBA Board of Governors decides.
The Maloof family was in New York City during the NBA Board of Governors meeting this week to discuss the possible sale and relocation of the Kings to Seattle. The Maloofs agreed to a deal to sell their share of the Kings to a Seattle ownership group - led by Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and billionaire hedge fund manager Chris Hansen - in late January. Before the sale can be finalized, the NBA would have to approve the team's sale to the ownership group and relocation of the Kings to Seattle.
In response to the deal, Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson worked to put together a Sacramento ownership group that could make a viable counter-offer to the Seattle group's bid. The Sacramento ownership group is led by Tibco owner Vivek Ranadive, 24-Hour Fitness Founder Mark Mastrov,Qualcomm's Jacobs Family and at least 25 people investing $1 million each. The city of Sacramento also worked with investors to develop a plan to build an Entertainment and Sports Complex at Downtown Plaza. While the city will be contributing 58 percent to build the arena, JMA Ventures Inc, owner of Downtown Plaza, and Mark Friedman, Sacramento real estate developer, will also put up money to build and operate it.
Maloof said that he could not comment on whetherthe Sacramento bid was comparable toSeattle's. He also didn't say if the family would sell the team to the Sacramento ownership group if the NBA voted againstSeattle's offer.
However, Maloof said he is eager for the process to be over.
"I think everyone has been fair and worked real hard," Maloof said. "Everybody's trying."
It was unclear when the NBA will make a decision on the Kings' future. Maloof said he expects a decision by the first few days in May. However, NBA Commissioner David Stern said Wednesday that expecting a decision in the first week of May was a charitable estimation.