Seattle Hopes Crushed – NBA Owners Vote Down Sacramento Relocation
The Kings will NOT be moving to Seattle.
Wednesday, by a vote of 22-8, the NBA owners committee voted not to approve moving the Sacramento Kings to Seattle where they would become the SuperSonics.
Commissioner David Stern said today that Seattle's bid was "brisk, firm, and reflected the efforts that have been put into this, and the extraordinary ownership group they have put together."
The Seattle group led by Chris Hansen had upped their offer by $75 million, and had negotiated a back-door deal with the Maloof family -- the current owner of the Kings. However, without NBA approval the team cannot move.
While Seattle backers remained optimistic, Commissioner Stern has strongly hinted the NBA is not interested.
Stern said the support that Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson has generated -- both financially and in fan base -- plus regional factors were reasons to keep the team in California. Johnson is a former NBA veteran who found enough financial backing to reportedly pay for a new arena and other amenities to keep the team.
Despite a strong fan base and numerous sell-out games, the Kings have been one of the worst-performing franchises over the last decade.