Kings reach tentative arena deal to remain in Sacramento
Sacramento, CA – The Kings are staying in Sacramento after all.
The city of Sacramento, the Kings and the NBA announced a tentative deal Monday to finance a new arena for the club. Sacramento's city council will vote on the plan March 6.
In the proposal, the city will contribute $200-$250 million of the estimated $367 million arena, with arena operator AEG and the owners picking up the rest.
The announcement comes less than a year after Sacramento mayor Kevin Johnson -- a former NBA All-Star -- lobbied for more time to propose a new arena plan after the Maloof family, the club's majority owners since 1999, had been considering a move to Anaheim's Honda Center because of financial issues in the city and with the building now known as Power Balance Pavilion.
The arena, if approved by Sacramento's city council, would open for the 2015-16 season in the downtown rail yards.
"This is a great day for Sacramento, a great day for the Maloof family, a great day for the NBA," Joe Maloof said. "I'd like to thank the mayor for all of his hard work and efforts throughout the years and, of course, the commissioner for all of his support and everything he's done for the NBA. Our family is just so excited that we have the framework for a deal. We've always said we wanted to stay in Sacramento and now here's our opportunity."
The Kings have played in Sacramento since 1985, after relocating from Kansas City, and have played in the building formerly known as Arco Arena since the 1988-89 campaign.
A move to Anaheim would have marked the fifth different city for the franchise, which first played as the Rochester Royals from 1948-57. The club then moved to Cincinnati before heading to Kansas City and changing its name to the Kings in 1972.
The Kings have not made the playoffs since the 2005-06 campaign and currently sit in the basement in the Pacific Division with an 11-22 record.
"[We wanted to help] cement the future of the NBA in Sacramento. With the leadership of the mayor and the leadership of the Maloof family, I think this preliminary framework that we have is going to do just that," NBA commissioner David Stern said.