Adam Silver reportedly delivered key message to keep Kings in Sacramento

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

The future NBA commissioner helped the "coin flip" odds Sacramento faced to keep the Kings land in their favor.

The saga of the Kings staying in Sacramento was a long, twisting road. Every little detail was just a crumb in a path littered with board of governors meetings, rallies and arena proposals, but a new wrinkle was unveiled on how the decision was made. Adam Silver was a key voice that "changed the conversation" in a room that ultimately decided on keeping the Kings in Sacramento, according to John Lombardo and Terry Lofton's profile on the soon-to-be NBA comissioner for the Sports Business Journal:

Silver listened as debate raged between NBA owners, a phalanx of lawyers and Stern; the point of contention was whether ownership would allow the Sacramento Kings to be sold to a group that would move the team more than 625 miles north to Seattle. In the balance was an astounding franchise price of $406 million, along with a relocation fee rumored to be around $75 million, which would be split among ownership.

None of that mattered to Silver as he surgically cut through the posturing, pushing to keep the Kings in California and sending a message to owners and the fans about the importance of franchise stability.

"Adam was very blunt and it changed the conversation in the room," Washington Wizards owner Ted Leonsis said. "The lawyers spoke and David spoke, but Adam found a higher calling that all of us tapped into."

Plenty of things needed to happen for Sacramento to keep their NBA franchise, especially with the Maloofs preferring the deal with Chris Hansen's Seattle-based group over the bid to keep the Kings in place.

Sacramento needed to find a majority investors. multiple minority investors and even replacement minority investors, the investor group needed to reimburse Hansen's $30 million non-refundable deposit to the Maloofs and also needed to layout a plan for a "modern" arena.

Even with all of these requirement being met there were reports streaming in that Sacramento's fate was still a "coin flip." From the sound of things, it seems Silver's message of proving the stability of NBA franchises was one of the reasons that coin fell in Sacramento's favor.

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