NBA's Kings Give Sacramento One Last Chance: Owner
Out of respect for its fans, the Sacramento Kings agreed to stay one more year instead of relocating to Anaheim, Joe Maloof, president of Maloof Companies, which include the Sacramento Kings and The Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, told CNBC Wednesday.
"The business community reached out to us, the fans were spectacular. In our heart we just had to go back," Maloof said.
Mayor Kevin Johnson, who played 12 seasons in the NBA, wants to keep the Kings in Sacramento, and is trying to boost support for a new arena.
"He made a lot of promises to the league, to the relocation committee, to us as a family, and we're going to take him on his word and hopefully he can get it done. We're 100 percent behind him, and we'll go from there," he added.
Separately, Anaheim's leaders had approved a plan to refurbish the Honda Center with proceeds from the sale of up to $75 million in lease revenue bonds to help lure the Kings away from California's capital.
Also, local billionaire Ronald Burke, who is co-owner of the NHL's Pittsburgh Penguins, had expressed interest in acquiring the team and keeping them in Sacramento. However, the Maloofs have insisted they do not wish to sell.
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