As NBA fans in Seattle look forward to the prospect of having a team around to root for once again, fans down in Sacramento are holding their breath that they don't suffer the same fate as basketball fans in the Northwest.
But in a report from the Sacramento Bee Wednesday, NBA commissioner David Stern said that the Kings will make a large contribution to the Sacramento arena project, essentially trying whatever it takes to keep the team in Northern California, though he wouldn't disclose any figures.
During an interview with TNT"s David Aldridge, Stern noted that hopefully things will 'make sense' before the March 1st deadline to hash out a deal for the proposed $387 million arena deal from the city. Los Angeles based AEG is also seen to be a player in the deal, which is viewed as a 'team contribution by Stern:
"The team has agreed to a substantial contribution, both directly from itself, but also by catalyzing AEG to be interested. In effect, whatever money AEG puts in is because of give-backs by the team ... so we see that as a team contribution," Stern said. "Whether it ultimately closes all the gaps, we'll know as we negotiate continuously and I fully expect that we will be negotiating in Orlando (this weekend when team and city representatives meet for the All-Star game)"
Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson also plans to meet with Stern during the weekend face-to-face, and also expects to have a 'term sheet' to show the City Council for review on Tuesday.
Where this leaves Seattle in terms of a new NBA team is still uncertain, though it isn't looking good for a Kings move up North at the moment.
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