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Sacramento Kings' issues have gotten complex

Sacramento and Seattle each makes a 90-minute pitch to the NBA's relocation/finance committee, but this is going into overtime.

April 06, 2013|By Ben Bolch
  • A Sacramento Kings fan shows her support to keep the team in Sacramento.
A Sacramento Kings fan shows her support to keep the team in Sacramento. (Rich Pedroncelli / Associated…)

Kings in waiting

Three hours of presentations by contending ownership groups apparently weren't enough.

The battle for the Sacramento Kings may require a playoff.

Commissioner David Stern indicated this week that the decision of whether the Kings can be sold to Seattle investors could extend beyond the NBA Board of Governors meeting April 18-19 in New York.

It had been widely expected that the board's vote on the proposed sale and relocation of the team would be the final say on the matter, but Stern told reporters there were "complex" issues that needed to be resolved before a final decision could be reached.

Stern made his comments after investors and officials from Sacramento and Seattle each made a 90-minute pitch to the NBA's relocation/finance committee.

Among the issues complicating matters are the timelines for new arenas to be completed. Seattle's ownership group has said it would most likely have an arena ready by the 2015-16 season, with the caveat that it might take an extra year. Sacramento's group has pledged to complete its arena before the 2016-17 season.

"There are questions that the committee has asked us, the staff, to go back and seek details and answers on with respect to exact structure, capital commitments, construction timelines, potential obstacles given the fact that in either case, we'll be playing in, shall I say, suboptimal arenas for some period of time," Stern said.

Seattle's arena plan also faces a pair of legal challenges, according to the Seattle Times. One is that it violates Seattle Initiative 91 by using up to $200 million in public funding without guaranteeing a sufficient financial return to the city; the other is that an environmental review of the arena construction plans should have been completed prior to the agreement to build the facility.

Sacramento's arena plan has its own environmental concerns. The Sacramento Bee reported that a tentative court ruling negated part of a new law intended to fast-track major construction projects that face legal challenges related to environmental issues.

Stern did not say when the Kings' fate would ultimately be decided other than in time to prepare for next season.

They're not worth it

Some might say the underachieving Lakers have the NBA's most overpriced players considering their league-high $100-million payroll.

Not so, according to The financial website released a list of the NBA's most overpaid players, with nary a Laker on it.

Using a combination of players' salaries and their win shares, which track how many possessions a player generates for his team during a game and how many of his own scoring opportunities he converts, Forbes listed New York's Carmelo Anthony as its most overcompensated player. Anthony is making $19.4 million this season while generating less than one full win (0.7) for the Knicks, according to the advanced metric.

Next up are Charlotte's Ben Gordon ($12.4 million, -2.1 win shares), Brooklyn's Joe Johnson ($19.75 million, 1.5) and Orlando's Hedo Turkoglu ($11.8 million, -0.6). The list is laden with players who can score but shoot a low percentage and tend to add little in other statistical categories.

Well, except for Turkoglu, who couldn't even score while serving a 20-game suspension after testing positive for steroids.

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