No longer fit for the Kings

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Cheers and Jeers,Sports,NBA,Craig Stouffer

Two wrongs don't make a right. But that won't keep the NBA from trying, with Seattle moving one giant step closer to getting a basketball team again at the expense of Sacramento.

The Maloof family, owner of the Kings, has reached an agreement to sell controlling interest in the team to a group led by hedge fund manager Chris Hansen, which will petition the league to move the team to Seattle in time for the 2013-14 season.

It stands to be an unfair loss for the California capital, where fans have never wavered and were as loud as any in the league when the Kings were at their best. But there aren't enough of them in the country's 20th-ranked TV market (in 2012-13 according to Nielsen). Seattle is the 12th largest, and the NBA needs to have a team there when its current national TV contract expires in 2016.

Of course, that doesn't help explain the rationale for stealing the SuperSonics from one of the NBA's most passionate markets in 2008 and dropping them into Oklahoma City (now ranked 41st). While the outcry over that theft has never quite subsided, Sacramento could be forgotten just like the Kings' previous homes in Kansas City, Omaha, Cincinnati and upstate New York.

The NBA's relocation committee, led by none other than the man who moved the Thunder, team owner Clay Bennett, is expected to approve the Kings' relocation, according to reports. But it's not clear whether he will return the Sonics' statistical history, and he certainly can't give back the years he already took from Seattle.

- Craig Stouffer

cstouffer@washingtonexaminer.com

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Craig Stouffer

Staff writer - sports
The Washington Examiner