Hedge fund manager Chris Hansen says the new assessment reflects his group's effort to "further demonstrate the extent of our commitment to bring basketball back to Seattle." By increasing the value of the franchise, the offer to the Maloof family - who owns 65 percent of the team- has increased by $48.75 million.
The increased bid comes a day after tweets by Miami Heat owner Micky Arison surfaced that said he and other owners on the NBA's relocation committee thought Sacramento had done nothing to lose its franchise, while Seattle and one of Hansen's investment partners, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, had not done enough to keep the Seattle Sonics from leaving in 2008. The relocation committee made a unanimous recommendation last week against moving the team.
Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson responded quickly to Hansen's increased offer saying, "I believe the NBA owners realize that there is far more to think about than just an increased bid. They know what this story means to the league. We look forward to talking with all of them again in Dallas."
The full NBA Board of Governors meets next Wednesday to vote on a request to relocate the Kings to Seattle. The Board will also likely vote on the Seattle group's bid for the team. A group of Sacramento investors has expressed hope the owners would also vote on -and approve- the Sacramento bid for the general partnership shares of the team -$341.25 million, which is now $65 million less than the Seattle offer.
There was confusion by many news outlets after Hansen's announcement on the sonicsarena.com website where Hansen said his offer for the team had increased from $550 million to $625 million.