The latest news out of Sacramento suggests the Kings shouldn't pack their bags for Seattle just yet. According to a report from Tony Bizjak and Dale Kasler of The Sacramento Bee, the NBA and the city of Sacramento are calling conversations surrounding arena negotiations constructive as they released a joint statement on Wednesday. The two parties have crafted a two-week timeline with hopes of finalizing a financing plan for a new arena before the league-mandated deadline of March 1.
Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson and NBA Commissioner David Stern said that they, along with their negotiating teams, will continue to work on a deal even with the NBA's All-Star Weekend set to begin Friday in Orlando. As such, a planned city council hearing scheduled for February 28 was moved to March 6 in order to give the council an ample amount of time to digest a proposal before voting. If an agreement is reached by the deadline, both sides expect to make a public announcement on that day.
The projected cost of constructing the new arena is set to run the city of Sacramento and the Kings organization a total of $387MM. While the majority of the cost will be funded publicly, the city of Sacramento expects the Kings to contribute at least $85MM to the completion of the project. The Kings anticipate receiving $50MM from likely arena operator AEG, which the team hopes to use toward fulfilling their financial obligation toward arena construction. There is no word on whether the city of Sacramento has signed off on such an arrangement.