NBA Relocation Committee Recommends Sacramento Kings Not to Move to Seattle

April 30, 2013

The NBA announced Monday that the relocation committee met Monday and voted unanimously to recommend to the Board of Governors not to approve relocation of the Sacramento Kings to Seattle.

The move doesn’t mean the end to the saga, as the NBA Board of Governors will have to vote on the matter. But the Board is expected to vote in accordance with the relocation committee’s recommendation. The move also likely means that the ownership group led by Vivek Ranadive and 24-hour Fitness co-founder Mark Mastrov will be approved.

The vote is a stunning victory for a small market that appeared dead in the water just months ago. The efforts of Mayor Kevin Johnson and local support groups helped to organize a massive grassroots campaign that eventually brought in the money to make a competitive offer in order to outbid Chris Hansen and his Seattle group.

Despite the recommendation, investor Chris Hansen pledged to “move forward with the transaction” he signed with the Maloof family to buy and move the franchise anyway. In a post on his Seattle arena website late Monday night, Hansen said he plans to pitch the NBA Board of Governors at its meeting the week of May 13, when league owners will vote on the issue.

“When we started this process everyone thought it was impossible,” Hansen wrote. “While this represents yet another obstacle to achieving our goal, I just wanted to reassure all of you that we have numerous options at our disposal and have absolutely no plans to give up. Impossible is nothing but a state of mind.”