When the Maloof brothers asked the other NBA owners for more time to declare whether or not they were moving the Sacramento Kings this off-season, it was obviously to give them time to finish negotiations on the many facets of the deal still needing to be done.
Like getting upgrades to the Honda Center in Anaheim approved. That now may happen, according to the Sacramento Bee (via SB Nation).
The Honda Center has the luxury boxes and some of the amenities the Maloofs want to help drive revenue. But it also is still an 18-year-old building. The locker rooms would need to be upgraded and a new practice facility would need to be built for the team.
On April 12, the Anaheim City Council will vote on whether or not to float bonds to pay for those upgrades. That would be one day before the Kings season ends, and just six days ahead of the Maloofs April 18 deadline to inform the NBA of its plans.
The city of Anaheim owns the Honda Center, but Anaheim Ducks’ owner Henry Samueli manages it. He also is rumored to be giving the Maloofs a $100 million loan to facilitate this move, something the Maloofs have denied.
Moving is going to be expensive — there is $30 million league relocation fee, plus a $70 million outstanding loan from Sacramento — so a number of things still have to come together for the Kings to pull this off. It could fall apart.
But the momentum is there. It’s more likely to happen than not. And with a television contract that could be four times what the Kings got in Sacramento, and with a new building with more luxury boxes and revenue streams, they think the short term pain is worth the long term gain.
Well, at least until the lockout kills that momentum in the community and the Maloofs find that the people of Orange County only come out when the team is winning.
The Spurs beat the Mavericks by 26 points on Friday night, a game all of the Dallas players would love to forget. But there was a funny moment for rookie big man Salah Mejri: after a dunk, he appeared to yell something at the San Antonio bench. Gregg Popovich and Tim Duncan were completely nonplussed.
For what it’s worth, Mejri later tweeted that he wasn’t intending to be disrespectful.
Hassan Whiteside recorded a triple-double last night against the Hornets, and his tenth block was particularly impressive. He didn’t so much block Marvin Williams‘ layup attempt as pluck it out of the air with one hand. It almost looks like it should count as a block, rebound and steal at the same time.
The NBA world has taken notice of the water crisis in Flint, Michigan. In Thursday night’s home game against the Knicks on TNT, Pistons players wore warmup shirts that read “FLINT NOW,” and the organization announced a $500,000 donation towards providing clean water for residents of the town.
Former Pistons great and general basketball legend Rasheed Wallace went even further, according to a tweet from his alma mater, the University of North Carolina:
Sheed obviously has a connection to Michigan, having played in Detroit for six years (including on the 2004 title team) and serving as an assistant coach for the Pistons during the 2013-14 season. This was an incredible gesture by him for the residents of a town that has been without drinkable water for a long time.
The Kings are a complete mess right now. After a loss to the Nets on Friday night, the team is reportedly considering firing head coach George Karl, who has been with the team for just about one year, and DeMarcus Cousins says they have “a bigger issue than the players.”
But, on the bright side, Cousins is still a monster on the court. During the Nets loss, he posted a triple-double with 24 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists, showing why he’s the one thing about this franchise that is going to be worth talking about long-term.