Sacramento Kings Relocation Saga: Anaheim Responds

With the news of the Maloofs' decision to keep the Kings in Sacramento, Anaheim Arena Management released the following statement (courtesy of KFBK):

"We are disappointed in today’s developments but remain very optimistic about the long-term future of the NBA in Anaheim," said Michael Schulman, Chairman of Anaheim Arena Management. "We wish the Maloof family and City of Sacramento well and hope they are successful in their endeavors. Since we began working toward bringing an NBA franchise to Orange County, we have maintained that this process is about getting a team for the fans, as basketball is a sport loved by Southern Californians. With the nation’s second most populous region, one which serves as home to nearly the same number of people as the entire state of Texas, we are continuing our pursuit of an NBA team for our venue. Southern California has long proved its ability to support major league sports franchises, yet both of our area basketball teams share an arena in the northern-most part of the region. If an NBA franchise came to Anaheim, nearly 10 million people will have greater access to regularly attend professional basketball games due to the location of Honda Center. Recently listed as one of the five most successful arenas in North America (along with Staples Center), Honda Center is without question a leader in the industry. With that in mind, our pursuit continues and we look forward to securing a franchise for area fans in the very near future."

Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait issued the following statement regarding the Kings:

"Anaheim remains an NBA-ready city," said Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait.   "We are proud of the work that was done to bring an NBA team to Anaheim's Honda Center.  In particular, we protected the city's taxpayers and the city's finances from any risk by using private, not public, funds in the financing. 

"As confirmed by NBA Commissioner David Stern, this process has shown that Anaheim/Orange County is a stand-alone market.  With more than 3 million residents, Orange County is its own region – not a suburb.  We believe that there should be more than one venue in southern California to enjoy NBA basketball. 

"Though we are disappointed at today's announcement, we respect this business decision.  I am grateful to the Maloofs for their strong interest in Anaheim and Orange County. I want to thank my colleagues on the city council, the city staff and Anaheim Arena Management for their commitment to this effort.  I especially want to thank Henry and Susan Samueli for their passion and dedication to Anaheim and Orange County.

"The bottom line is this: The final chapter has not been written.  Anaheim/Orange County is ripe for the NBA and we offer an incredibly attractive package to any team.  As a world-class sports and entertainment destination, Anaheim will continue to move forward and we remain optimistic to one day welcoming professional basketball to Anaheim."

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