While the Kings are winding up another lost season on the court, a series of terse letters between city government officials of Sacramento and the Kings continues.
The root of the problem is whether or not the Kings plan to pay off their $77 million loan to the city should the team relocate to Anaheim, as expected. The Kings have until April 18 to put in a formal request to move to Orange County.
In the meantime, the Kings owners -- the Maloof family -- have kept silent about any of this. A lawyer representing the family refused to put in writing any assurance that the Kings will pay off the loan.
Now the city of Sacramento is preparing for a war in the courts, if need be. This week, Sacramento officials accused the Kings of being evasive on how it will pay off the loan. Assistant City Manager John Dangberg said his city wants specific details from the Kings on how and when they will repay the loan and that the city wants to set up an escrow account for repayment.
"I hearby request direct, non-evasive and unambiguous written responses," Dangberg wrote to the Kings.
The NBA office sent a formal letter to the city of Sacramento stating that the Kings had not yet requested permission to relocate and added, "we expect that the team will act appropriately with respect to any remaining financial obligations it may have to the city."
Power Balance Pavilion, the team's practice facility and the land are valued at $51 million, well below the $77 million payoff. That's what concerns city officials. The existing loan contract stipulates that if the Kings default on the loan, the city will get a $25 million investment in the team and obtain ownership of Power Balance, widely viewed as the most antiquated building in the NBA.
GRIZZLIES 101, KINGS 96: The Kings' spoiler role came didn't pan out as host Memphis prevailed to secure the final playoff spot in the Western Conference. An 18-7 run cut the Memphis lead to 97-96 with 39 seconds to play but a dynamic block by Tony Allen on Tyreke Evans denied the Kings with 16.9 seconds left, who lost for the second straight time on the road on their last road swing of the season. Samuel Dalembert had 17 points and 16 rebounds for Sacramento and Jason Thompson had 15 and 12 off the bench.
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