by Brett Edwards
The Maloofs, owners of the Palms Hotel in Las Vegas and primary sponsors for this year's All-Star festivities there, have been trying to get the state to pay for a new arena. Sacramento voted down yet another arena financing sales tax yesterday, this time by an 80% margin. The most telling quotes from the story:
"The Maloofs are committed to staying in Sacramento if they possibly can, and there's certainly no interest on the part of the NBA in moving the team. But we can't figure out what to do next," said the NBA's Harvey Benjamin, who participated in ultimately unsuccessful negotiations with the city, county and the railyard developer for an arena.
Joe and Gavin Maloof issued a written statement saying they would "seek guidance from the NBA and hope they can provide suggestions about alternative means of achieving our objectives in Sacramento."
OBVIOUSLY this is the Maloofs way of saving face when they do yank the team and move them to Vegas. They will just say "Hey, we tried over and over to get an arena financed, and YOU didn't vote for it, so you're at fault and now we have to leave."
This is a bunch of crap, as we know that billionaire owners of an NBA franchise and a successful hotel and casino could easily afford the new arena. The truth is that these playboys would much rather party it up in Vegas with their NBA team than in the cow town that is Sacramento. It's hard to blame them, but please let's not say this is because of money or failed state ballot measures. This is a selfish move by a spoiled ownership group that is intentionally screwing over their fan base, plain and simple.