To anybody who followed the Sacramento Kings’ potential relocation to Seattle, it’s not exactly shocking news, but according to a report from Komo News, Seattle investor Chris Hansen and the NBA are in “productive talks” to bring basketball back to the Emerald City.
Chris Hansen, a hedge fund investor along with Steve Ballmer of Microsoft fame, attempted to purchase the Sacramento Kings when they were put up for sale by the Maloof family earlier this year. Their intent was to move the franchise to Seattle, something David Stern and the NBA eventually denied.
However, that doesn’t mean the two sides gave up the idea of basketball returning to Seattle, a city which has been void of the NBA since the Seattle Supersonics moved to Oklahoma City in 2008.
Per Komo News:
“Several NBA sources in the know tell me there have been productive talks on expansion in Seattle,” Montemayor wrote Wednesday on Twitter. “As the league preps for a new TV deal they have discussed a timetable but have not settled the issue.
“I am also told the H&B (Hansen and Ballmer) group are aware of a working plan to return the NBA to Seattle,” he continued, “and were told as much and acknowledged their preference to have a new franchise at the end of the NBA Kings saga.”
The NBA has held their ground in recent months (and years) stating that expansion isn’t an option until the NBA’s television deal expires, which runs through the 2015-16 season. However, there was talk of renewing the deal early a few months back and given the high quality ownership group in Seattle begging to join the billionaire boys club, though a few years out, NBA expansion in Seattle is looking more and more likely.