Investors trying to keep the Kings in Sacramento made key concessions to the NBA, including a promise to limit the amount of revenue sharing they would accept, according to a story Monday in Sports Business Journal.
The concessions were made shortly before the relocation committee voted last Monday to recommend the team stay put instead of moving to Seattle. The issue was raised by the Seattle bid group led by Chris Hansen. He reportedly told owners at a committee meeting April 3 that the franchise in Seattle would be a payer into the revenue sharing system developed from the league’s new collective bargaining agreement, whereas the smaller market in Sacramento would be a be a revenue-taker.
Quoting an anonymous source, the outlet said the group led by Silicon Valley billionaire Vivek Ranadive agreed to accept fewer revenue-sharing dollars while the team was still playing at the old arena. Once the Kings move into the proposed downtown arena, the Kings would take no money at all.
The Journal said the Kings, who had the league’s worst attendance in the regular season, would expect to collect about $18 million a year under the new arrangement.
The concession could have been key in the relocation committee’s vote.
The magazine also said the Ranadive group agreed to pay for “a significant amount” of any cost overruns in the construction of the new, $448 million arena. But according to the term sheet tentatively approved by the City Council in March, the investors agreed to cover all of the overruns.
Neither the NBA nor the Ranadive group had comments on the story, according to the Journal.
In scheduling news, the NBA Board of Governors has formally booked a meeting May 15 in Dallas to consider the relocation committee’s 7-0 recommendation to keep the Kings in Sacramento. Still unclear is whether the league with also consider the Hansen offer of $357 million to buy 65 percent of the Kings from the Maloofs.
The relocation recommendation requires a simple majority of 16 of the 30 owners. The Hansen group, according to a source, has been researching whether support exists among owners to deny the recommendation, an outcome rarely seen in such matters.