Seattle facing new competition for NBA team
While the environmental review for a new Seattle arena has officially begun this week, the city faces a new competitor in the quest for an NBA team.
Backers of a new $350 million arena in Virginia Beach, Va. say they’ve had meetings with the representative of an existing NBA team about moving to the city, the Virginian-Pilot reports.
The report says Warren Harris, the city’s director of economic development, told a group of city leaders the mayor and Governor of Virginia have met with the owners of the Sacramento Kings.
Harris confirmed there was a meeting with an NBA team, but denied naming a team or owners.
The Kings have been widely speculated to be the most likely to move. The Maloof family, owners of the team, have been under the gun in Sacramento after walking away from an agreement to help pay for a new arena in Northern California.
But team spokesman Tony Hanson refused to comment on the report.
“We have been contacted over the years by several cities and parties interested in the Kings organization. However, we are not going to comment on rumors regarding relocation of the franchise.”
There have been several reports in recent months the Kings owners rebuffed efforts by investor Chris Hansen, leader of the effort to build a new Seattle arena, to buy the team. Both Hansen and the Kings have refused to comment on those rumors as well.