Sacramento Kings fans can breathe easy. Their beloved team isn’t going anywhere.
With Anaheim and Seattle threatening to lure the franchise away from the place it has called home since 1985, Mayor Kevin Johnson, NBA commish David Stern and Kings’ owners the Maloofs announced that agreement has been reached to finance and build a new arena for the Kings in Sacramento.
SI.com’s Sam Amick confirmed the news this morning, noting Mayor Johnson’s excitement:[blackbirdpie url=”https://twitter.com/#!/sam_amick/status/174198081192079360″]
The deal is pending approval from the Sacramento City Council, which will hold a vote on March 6th.
The city will be picking up most of the tab, while the Maloof brothers have agreed to chip in $75 million right away and another $75 million over the life of the agreement. Just last year, the brothers were pushing hard to relocate the team to Southern California.
Happy Kings fans can send flowers and candy to Mayor Johnson’s office. Last Spring, as the Maloofs had one foot out the door, Johnson managed to convince David Stern to give him one more year to try to keep the Kings in Sacramento. Johnson beat the March 1 deadline by three days.
All three sides spent the entire weekend huddled together in Orlando, site of the NBA All-Star Game, hoping to hammer out an agreement.
A few hours ago, Mayor Johnson made a cryptic announcement via Twitter:[blackbirdpie url=”https://twitter.com/#!/KJ_MayorJohnson/status/174201573201809408″]