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Report: Kings owners set Friday deadline for Sacramento investment group

The SportsXchange

A Sacramento investment group that hopes to purchase the NBA's Kings and keep them in California's capitol city have until 5 p.m. Friday (PDT) to submit a written and binding offer of their intentions, according to the Sacramento Bee, citing a source close to the deal.

The Bee's report said the Maloof family, which already has an offer in hand to sell the team to a Seattle-based group and move the team there, will consider the hometown offer a serious bid, particularly if the NBA rules against the Sacramento-to-Seattle deal.

However, if the Sacramento-based investment group does not submit an offer that matches the Seattle group's bid by Friday's deadline, the Maloof family reportedly will then terminate further negotiations with the Sacramento group, the source told The Bee. The source did not reveal who within the Maloof family issued the ultimatum, or when or why.

The source did say, though, that the Sacramento investment group had submitted a "statement of interest" to buy the team from the Maloofs, but that the offer was reportedly "not even close" to the reported $341 million bid for the Kings put forth by the Seattle group, the source noted.

Last week, however, NBA Commissioner David Stern said the discrepancy in the offers from both groups was reportedly no longer an issue.

A spokesman for the Maloof family, Eric Rose, told The Bee, "Our policy is not to negotiate in public."

California Senate President Darrell Steinberg told The Bee on Wednesday that the Sacramento group's offer is "strong and fully competitive" and that "it is equivalent to the Seattle offer."

Steinberg told The Bee that he knows the Sacramento group's bid amount but will not reveal it.

The Seattle group is headed by hedge fund manager Chris Hansen and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, while the Sacramento group is fronted by software tycoon Vivek Ranadive, East Bay health-club financier Mark Mastrov, the Jacobs family of San Diego and Sacramento developer Mark Friedman.

Neither investment group would comment on The Bee's story.

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