Actually, not really. Oh, yes, plans were unveiled today at a meeting at the Cal Expo, but that's all, just plans. According to the folks on hand, everything is in place, except:
1. A developer
2. A request for proposal
3. A possible tax "increment"
None of which are available at the moment. "This is not a shovel-in-the-ground project," said John Moag, an NBA consultant.
Now that's an understatement. To quote Moag once again, "This is not a project that's going to begin this year."
The reasoning for that last tidbit is the economy. Which leads this observer to wonder, if this project won't get underway until the economy turns around, and the economy is not expected to turn around for at least another year or two, just how much longer are the Maloofs willing to stick around at Arco?
Also of note, the fact that board members of Cal Expo were kept in the dark about the proposal until the very last minute, which is not altogether unsurprising considering that the NBA had its hand fully around the preparations.
Assemblyman Dave Jones (a board member himself) told KCRA in Sacramento, "I think that in most public bodies I've been a part of, actually all public bodies I've been a part of, board members have an opportunity to see a proposal before the board meeting. So it's a little strange."
Kings fans, we know how you feel. This whole plan sounds suspiciously like the detail-free plan Clay Bennett foisted upon the Washington legislature, then, after watching it fail, pointed to as his excuse for leaving.
For the sake of the good fans of Sacramento, let's hope that's not the case this time.
You think Bennett gave you a terrible offer, ours is $1.4 billion more! This plan actually wants to build a mall next to an existing mall.
Our team is gone. I hope your city is the one that lands our franchise.
The deal sure seems to be a bit far-fetched, for sure, especially in light of the economic realties in California these days.
Sactown Royalty's take here is a good overview. I hope my pessimism is mis-guided, if only for the fact that Sacramento fans have been more loyal than any other fanbase out there. For Seattle and Sacto to lose their franchises while the Clippers stay in LA is something that only a masochist could love.
I am sad that the Sonics is gone. Hope that the Kings stay strong.
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