It’s official, Indian-born tech billionaire Vivek Ranadive and his Sacramento group own the Kings. Which means the team is staying put.
The League’s Board of Governor’s (made up of the 30 owners) unanimously approved the sale on Tuesday. This is the official confirmation of what was expected after the same board rejected a move of the Kings franchise to Seattle, essentially killing the sale of the team to the Chris Hansen group.
This is good on two levels.
One, the Maloof family is now out of the NBA, and that is a good thing. They were young energetic owners a decade ago, which was good for Sacramento and the league. But some bad investments left them cash poor, they handled getting a new arena in Sacramento about as poorly as you could, and by the end they were just an embarrassment.
Second, this is good for Sacramento. Mayor Kevin Johnson did what a lot of mayors could not — put together an ownership group and an arena deal in just a few months to keep the team. He played hard but he followed the road map laid out by the league and met goals that seemed impossible at the time.
It sucks for Seattle, which had a very good arena and ownership plan of their own. They feel used and it’s hard to blame them. Hopefully there will be another chance because there should be an NBA team in that city.
The Kings will now officially start the search for a new GM and coach.
Ty Lawson is headed to the Kings, as first reported on Monday. The team made the move official on Wednesday with a press release, and USA Today‘s Sam Amick offers up another important piece of information: Lawson’s deal is not guaranteed, making it essentially a make-good camp invite.
It’s staggering how Lawson went from a borderline All-Star level point guard in 2012-13 to signing a non-guaranteed one-year deal with a lottery team three years later. His off-the-court issues have contributed to that, and he didn’t produce last season in Houston and Indiana. Still, he should have a pretty good chance of making the Kings’ roster, with Seth Curry and Rajon Rondo gone and Darren Collison their only proven point guard. They need depth there.
When Ben Simmons declared for the NBA draft this spring, he signed with LeBron James‘ Klutch Sports group for representation. That association would appear to have its advantages for the No. 1 overall pick, including the opportunity to work out with James and Dwyane Wade during the offseason. Wade posted a group photo on Instagram on Wednesday afternoon:
Also, it’s pretty staggering to see Simmons standing next to James and realizing that he’s bigger and taller.
Thanks to a match from an anonymous donor, beloved TNT sideline reporter Craig Sager was able to receive his third bone-marrow transplant since 2014 in an extended battle with leukemia. Sager’s son, Craig Sager II, shared a photo on Twitter on Wednesday afternoon of his father undergoing the transplant, appearing to be in good spirits as usual.
Our continued well wishes go out to Sager and his family in his recovery, and we hope to see him back on the sidelines this season.
Last season, the Sacramento Kings signed Seth Curry, brother of Stephen Curry. He left this summer for Dallas, and now the Kings are working out the brother of the other Splash Brother — Klay Thompson‘s brother Mychel — according to international basketball reporter David Pick.
Mychel Thompson’s only NBA experience is five games with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2011-12. He spent some time in the D-League after that, and played in Italy during the 2015-16 season.