SUNDAY, 10:15am: Mike Gruss of The Virginian-Pilot examines how five highly sought-after retail stores are an indicator of whether a market is likely to be suitable for the NBA. His research shows that the fewer Apple, Ikea, Anthropologie, Crate & Barrel and Brooks Brothers stores located in a market reflects an area less likely to be able to support an NBA franchise.
Simply put, these particular companies avoid areas where they believe consumers do not have enough money to spend at their stores. Gruss contends that if these stores won't come to a particular market due to financial concerns, then it is even less likely that a professional franchise would make such a move.
FRIDAY, 6:42pm: The Kings don't appear to be heading to Virginia Beach anytime soon, despite a local report last week that suggested otherwise. Still, an executive from another team told Scott Howard-Cooper of NBA.com that the general sentiment around the league is that chances are "more and more remote" that the Kings will remain in Sacramento (Twitter link). Howard-Cooper isn't sold on that idea, and says Sacramento may still win out in the end since the Maloof brothers, who own the Kings, face roadblocks between them and any new destination (Twitter link).
Josh Kerns of MyNorthwest.com yesterday passed along a report from Sacramento radio host Carmichael Dave that the Maloofs rejected a recent bid by investor Chris Hansen of upwards of $400MM to buy the Kings. Hansen, who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, has been the primary force behind an effort to attract an NBA team and build a new arena in Seattle. Earlier this week Hansen purchased an $8MM piece of land in Seattle that he plans to use for the arena. That gives him all the land he's said he'd need for the project, according to Nick Eaton of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.
Howard-Cooper believes Anaheim, where the Kings almost moved in 2011, is still in play, and says the 20-year local TV deal between the Lakers and Time Warner Cable that kicks in for the Lakers this season could help Anaheim's case. Former Lakers broadcasters Fox Sports West and KCAL-TV could use the Kings as replacement programming (Twitter links).