Maloofs Won’t Sell To Sacramento Bidders

8:22pm: Tim Booth of The Associated Press reports that if Hansen's group buys a minority stake in the Kings, it will have the right to purchase a majority interest in the team at any time within a two-year window.

7:43pm: Chris Daniels of KING-TV in Seattle hears the Hansen group's proposed relocation fee is $126MM, slightly higher than the $115MM figure quoted to Windhorst (Twitter link). The share for each team would still work out to around $4MM. 

7:15pm: The league has been hoping to entice the Maloofs to sell to the Sacramento group, TNT's David Aldridge notes. It's unclear how today's news affects the league's thinking, but Ranadive and company are still expressing confidence that the Maloofs will ultimately sell to them (Twitter links).

6:06pm: Two sources tell Brian Windhorst of that the Maloof family, the principal owners of the Kings, have told the NBA they will not sell the team to the Sacramento-based bidding group led by Vivek Ranadive if the league doesn't approve their deal to sell the team to the Chris Hansen-led Seattle group. The Maloofs and Hansen have also worked out a backup deal in which Hansen and company would become minority owners while the Maloofs continue to run the club.

The Maloofs' pronouncement and secondary deal with the Seattle group come on the heels of yesterday's increased offer from the Hansen and his contingent of investors, which also includes Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. They upped their total valuation of the Kings by $75MM, to $625MM, and their bid for the Maloofs' 65% share to $409MM, a $51MM increase. Windhorst hears that revised offer includes a relocation fee of $115MM, which would break down to about $4MM for each of the league's 29 other teams. That's significantly larger than the $30MM relocation fee assessed to the SuperSonics when they moved to Oklahoma City to become the Thunder in 2008.

The NBA relocation committee will re-evaluate Hansen's bid to become principal owner, and has scheduled another meeting in advance of the full owners' meeting set for Tuesday in Dallas. Two weeks ago, the committee voted unanimously to recommend that the league reject Hansen's bid.

Hansen's backup offer would give his group a 20% share of the Kings for the price of $125MM. The league would have to approve the sale of that minority stake, just as it would with the majority stake, as Windhorst points out. Still, the league can't force the Maloofs to sell to Ranadive's group. The Maloofs and the city of Sacramento have been unable to agree on an arena plan, but, infused with cash from the Seattle group, the family could remain in control of the Kings and continue to pressure the city to give them a deal to their liking. If, after more time has passed, the two sides haven't reached an agreement, the Maloofs could approach the league again about relocating the team.

Owners are concerned that Ranadive's group won't be able to close and execute an arena deal in Sacramento, Windhorst hears, speculating that could be the impetus for the renewed efforts of Hansen and the Maloofs.

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