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SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – The future of the Kings is still up in the air. And Mayor Kevin Johnson is preparing for his last-minute full-court press in the big apple he hopes will keep the team in the capital city.
“It’s definitely going into the 11th hour,” said basketball fan Greg Marshall.
A critical meeting is just hours away.
“I’m looking forward to see who’s going to hit the game-winning shot,” said Marshall.
Johnson will meet with the NBA on Wednesday to pitch the newly approved arena deal.
“I think it’s good for the city. We definitely need something like this. The city is thriving, it’s growing,” said Jeff Reid, a Kings fan. “I think it’s only going to make it better, but they just need to get the ball rolling, make something happen.”
And that’s exactly what people want. Keeping the Kings in Sacramento with a new arena could revitalize downtown, bring new business and create jobs.
“The business people need, we need more downtown, we need business, we need opportunity, we need a major team here to do that,” said Pam Champman, a Kings fan.
The Kings’ current owners are expected to be in New York as well, including George Maloof.
“Frankly I really don’t like them, so I think it’s funny that they’re going to this and they’re going to show their love for the Kings and Sacramento,” said Reid. “But I just don’t buy it. I really don’t care about the Maloofs.”
The Maloofs have already agreed to sell the Kings to a group of investors led by Chris Hansen who want to move the team to Seattle. That group is also going to be at the meeting.
“I think that meeting is going to keep the Kings in Sacramento,” said Reid. “I don’t think that they’re going to let them leave, it’s a good city for the team.”
Tuesday evening, the mayor announced that in the effort to purchase the 7 percent of shares owned by Bob Cook that currently going through bankruptcy court, a minority owner filed an intent to match the Seattle’s investment group’s offer.
Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg also caught a redeye flight to New York City Tuesday to support Sacramento at the NBA meeting.
Here’s a look at some of the key dates in April:
- April 3: Mayor Johnson presents the arena plan to the NBA.
- April 17: Kings play their final regular season game in Sacramento.
- April 18-19: NBA Board of Governors meeting.
During the Board of Governors meeting, NBA owners will vote on the proposed sale of the Kings to the Seattle group at that time.