Reporting Steve Large
SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – On Wednesday, the Maloofs issued an ultimatum to the Sacramento investor group trying to buy the Kings, saying they want an offer in writing by Friday or they will not negotiate with Sacramento investors — no matter what.
Mayor Kevin Johnson had more cameras on him than any Kings player.
“People have to understand I’ve got a good relationship with the Maloofs. Publicly, we may differ on an occasion, or more,” the mayor said.
Again, he was crowded courtside at a Kings game and asked about an ultimatum by the Maloofs.
“They know what the number is. They know it’s better than competitive, and I think Stern came out with a press conference April 3 and said money is not an issue right now,” Johnson said.
At the Kings’ second to last home game, the mayor deflected questions about the Maloofs’ reported demand: a 48-hour deadline for Sacramento to submit a bid that matches Seattle’s $525 million offer for the franchise.
Lead Sacramento investor Vivek Ranadivé had said in New York last week that the offer is competitive with Seattle’s, but he has not said it “matches.”
“I think all of the stakeholders will be pleased with the offer that we made,” said Johnson.
The mayor says the Maloofs already know Sacramento’s offer.
“They know the number. Trust me, they know the number,” he said.
Johnson says the NBA’s deadline, not the Maloofs’, is the one he is focused on.
“I think at the end of the day, it won’t be about all these rumors being said. It will be about two good offers from two good cities that both deserve teams. The difference is, we have a team here and we should keep our team,” said Johnson.
Johnson would not say if rumors of the vote expected during the NBA’s meetings on April 18-19 would or would not be delayed.
The Kings have four more games left — three on the road and then the season finale at home against the Los Angeles Clippers.
Steve Large will be live in New York on April 18-19 for the meetings. You can follow him on Twitter at @largesteven.