ESPN is reporting that the future of the Sacramento Kings is uncertain yet again as a deal for a new arena for the NBA franchise has fallen apart. It is possible the team's owners will try once again to move the team from California's capital.
"Is the deal dead? As we know it, absolutely," said Sacramento mayor, and for Phoenix Suns All-Star, Kevin Johnson Friday.
Johnson is extremely disappointed as he has fought for over a year to keep the team in Sacramento, and now he feels that the Maloofs don't really care about staying in Sacramento after all, ESPN reports.
"They (the Maloofs) are now saying they don't want to do the deal, which essentially means they don't want to be in Sacramento, and that's very, very disappointing," Johnson said.
NBA commissioner David Stern said Friday that a new arena for the Kings is "not going to happen," but he does not share Johnson's frustration with the owners. He has expressed support and understanding about their reservations that the arena project is too risky, both financially and politically, the LA Times reports.
Despite this setback, The Kings say they are "still committed to remaining the Sacramento Kings," ESPN reports.
Kings co-owner George Maloof told reporters that the "agreement" discussed with mayor Johnson was never ok'd by the Kings, NBA.com reports.
The Maloofs are also extremely frustrated with Johnson who has seemingly decided he's completely done negotiating.
"If the mayor says he's not negotiating, then he killed the deal. It's over. It's over." George Maloof told reporters.
Everyone involved in the situation is disappointed as the goal has always been to stay in Sacramento.
Last year, the Kings were set to move to Anaheim, but Kevin Johnson flew to New York to convince the Kings owners to try and stay in Sacramento.
The Maloofs and the NBA have tried desperately to make it work.
"I am extremely disappointed on behalf of both the Maloofs and the city of Sacramento, but I think that there's nothing further to be done and this is a situation that the Maloofs will have to make judgments on and the city will have to make judgments on, because I think he have done as much as we can do," NBA Commissioner David Stern said.
The Maloofs have expressed interest in simply renovating Power Balance Pavillion, which is the current home of the Sacramento Kings, but Kevin Johnson said in a news conference that they are "on their own" if they choose to renovate that arena, The New York Times reports.
"I don't know what the Maloofs plan to do," Johnson said. "I know they don't plan to honor their commitment to a downtown arena."