By Tim Booth
The Associated Press
SEATTLE — The NBA Board of Governors meets today in Dallas to tackle the issue of whether the Kings stay in Sacramento or are allowed to move to Seattle, where they would be rechristened the SuperSonics.
Investor Chris Hansen and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer have had a deal since January to buy a 65 percent controlling interest in the Kings from the Maloof family.
After months of staying quiet and letting the process play out, the Hansen and Ballmer group went on the offensive following the NBA relocation committee’s decision on April 29 to recommend denying the move.
It started last Friday when Hansen increased his total valuation of the Kings from $550 million to $625 million. Hansen also announced on his website that he has guaranteed owners that the franchise would pay into the league’s revenue-sharing system if it was in Seattle and not collect money as it has in Sacramento.
On Saturday, word leaked of a backup deal with the Maloofs to purchase a minority interest in the Kings with the Maloofs remaining the controlling party. The limited partnership would be a purchase of at least 20 percent of the Maloofs’ stake in the franchise at a valuation of $600 million, but the Hansen/Ballmer group would retain a two-year option to purchase majority control.