Report: Seattle gets the NBA back… at the expense of Sacramento | Red's Army - The Voice of Boston Celtics Fans
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Report: Seattle gets the NBA back… at the expense of Sacramento

It has been close to five years since basketball has left the city of Seattle. We may see the return of a team to the city at the beginning of next season.

According to Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski, The Maloof family is close to an agreement to sell the Sacramento Kings for $500 Million dollars to a Seattle-based ownership group led by hedge-fund manager Chris Hansen and Microsoft chairman Steve Ballmer. The group hopes to bring the team to the Emerald City.

The team would play in Seattle’s KeyArena, where the former Seattle Supersonics hosted games, starting in the 2013-14 season. The team would then transition into a new arena after two seasons.Plans to build a $490 million arena were approved last October by the City Council and the King County Council.

The deal is not done, however. According to Wojnarowski,

“No agreement has been signed, but one source with knowledge of the talks described the deal as ‘first and goal at the 1.’”

Royce Young of Daily Thunder posted on Twitter:

As for hopes for the team going back to their Sonics roots, there is an extreme possibility. “Clay Bennett owns the SuperSonics name and logo, but under the settlement, agreed to turn it over to a new Seattle owner at no cost”

Clay Bennett is the owner of the Oklahoma City Thunder and is the chairman of the NBA’s relocation committee.

Although the Maloofs are selling the team, they will keep a small portion of the team, but will have no say in the franchise, according to a source. The impending sale is just the latest in a series of options for the franchise.

After flirting with Las Vegas and what looked to be like a sure move to Anaheim in 2011, it was reported that the Kings had been discussing a move to Virginia Beach, where the team would’ve been an anchor tenant of a proposed arena.

Virginia Beach’s mayor set up a deadline for last Tuesday for having a deal between the Maloofs and arena developer Comcast-Spectacor down. The deadline passed and the city withdrew its support, the Maloofs explored other options.

The move would put an end to the uncertainty that has surrounded the Sacramento Kings for the past few years. This would be the fourth time the team has moved in their history, starting out in Rochester in 1945, moving to Cincinnati in 1957, then to Kansas City in 1972 before settling in Sacramento in 1985.

Sacramento’s fans aren’t going to go quietly into the dark night, though.  They’ve already started a petition to keep the team should an ownership group emerge that can match the Seattle offer.

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  • I bleed green in L.A.

    Does this help us get Cousins?

    Seattle deserves a basketball team. The city supports a MLB and NFL team, and they are a major market. Sacramento has nada, a WNBA team? Speaking of major markets, WHEN THE HELL DOES L.A. GET AN NFL TEAM!! Now that USC Sucks, I bet it comes very soon.

    • LA Flake

      I believe it does. But only if we’re willing to part ways with my favorite Celtic Rondo. The reason is because I’m sure the new owners would love to have an All Star PG as the face of its franchise in a new (old) city. DMC is an unbelievable talent but Rondo is a known commodity that they can market to their new (old) fans.

  • Lakerhater

    Happy to get the NBA back in seattle, but I feel for the sac fans. Clay Bennett and David Stern will screw you no matter how much you protest. Can’t belive I’ll get to watch Celtics Sonics back at the Key next year, Last time Durant was a skinny rookie and PP schooled him all night! I’v got baseline tickets for Blazers Celtics on 2/26 but the atmosphere there is not even close to what it is in Seattle. Sorry Sac fans, but I hope as a consolation you still the Thunder from OKC and Stern and Bennett end up cell mates in fed prison someday.

  • KY Celts fan

    Seems like a good move to me.

    Here what is interesting to me, and I’m not sure about precedent so someone can teach me. If this team does indeed move to Seattle, and does rename themselves the Sonics, who claims the 1979 championship? The new team or the Thunder? You would think the Thunder as that was the franchise that won it, and LA still claims their Minneapolis championships. But these are gonna be the same fans of the old Sonics, wearing the same colors, throwing on their old Payton and Kemp jerseys. Are the fans supposed to act like that never existed and reminisce about Oscar Robinson instead of Dennis Johnson? Seriously, how does this work? maybe some Browns fans can give some insight.

    • Kristovar

      In my personal opinion (which doesn’t matter a lick), the Lakers have no business claiming the MInneapolis titles and the Thunder have no right claiming any titles by Seattle. I hope that this new Seattle team claims a whole new name to screw over the Sonic/Thunder and starts anew.

      My girlfriend is from Cleveland and is a Browns fan… she couldn’t care less about the team. Neither can my in-laws regarding the move… other than sheer hatred of the Ravens. But they’re all firmly fans of the Browns. Oh well. Go Patriots!!!!!!

  • Kristovar

    After living in Washington for five+ years I have an affection for Seattle.

    So here’s an idea… how about Allen return to Seattle and finish up his years there? Oh wait, he’s an immature asshole. Nevermind.

  • Astarot

    Interesting news, it’s good that Seattle will get a team again I remember when our old friend Walter Ray was playin there working on his 3pt shooting record. I thought though that Maloofs had an agreement with Sacramento to build the new arena for Kings so they could stay in Sac?

  • Paul


    When Bennett bought the sonics, he also bought the sonics history. OKC are the new incarnation of the Seattle SuperSonicd. While old Seattle fans will back the new Seattle team, that team will have the Kings history. Sonicsgate is an interesting film to watch. It’s sonics-fan propaganda and is very one-sided but well worth a watch.

    And @kristovar, LA have every right claiming MN’s titles.

  • ZabJudah

    I Live In Sac And This Is Gay i guess i have to drive down to golden state now to the see celtics play.

    • Matt W

      Nice negative use of “gay.” It matches your shitty grammar.

  • Noori

    Great a team to tempt Avery Bradley once his contract is up 🙁

  • I’m torn by this…..really want yo see Seattle get a team back…..but hate to see the Kings leave Sacremento. Kings fans always support their team, whereas other cities like Charlotte & Milwaukee for instance, have losing teams and empty seats for so long it becomes normal. The Maloof’s’ are complete Vegas tools.

  • Quest

    Seattle great location. It will bring a lot of people down from Vancouver.

  • Caterpillar from Italy

    Crazy as a mad horse.
    Are they gonna buy and sell fans, too? What just shocks me it’s that fans are the last thing counting, if not in terms of how many they are and how much they can spend money on the “product”.
    And people seem to be cool about this, cool to be numbers for other numbers..
    I just can imagine the Celtics moving to – let’s say – Atlantic City to become the Atlantic City Criminals. How good is that?

  • Matt W

    This is kind of a bummer for Sacramento, but it’s not a real city and it can’t sustain a team. Having Seattle back in the NBA will be awesome.