Now that the five-month work stoppage is nearing an end, the NBA is fully reengaging itself in arena talks with the city. From Rob McAllister of KFBK Radio:
“We’d be only kidding ourselves, we knew the commissioner’s plate was full,” said Mayor Kevin Johnson on how talks had been going with the league.
Now, according to the Mayor, the two sides are, “negotiating at a higher degree than they had been in the past.” Kings’ representatives and city staff are drawing up term sheets and a financial plan. The talks also include developer, ICON/Taylor, and, potential arena operator, the Aschutz Entertainment Group.
Items being discussed include how much will the Kings pay as a tenant, what will happen to the outstanding loan with the city and what AEG will put up to run the sports and entertainment complex. All of those are coming on the basis that the city will make anywhere from $200-million to 250-million from the sale of public garages and spaces in downtown. The remaining gap from the $387-million estimated price tag would need to be closed by the AEG, the NBA and other sponsorship opportunities.
Kings fans are obviously excited that a season is on the horizon, but the fight to keep them for good is far from over. The next key date in the arena project is December 13th, when the parking feasibility study is released and voted on by the Sacramento City Council.