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Sacramento Kings Arena Plan Emerges, But Is It Too Late?

Sacramento has buzzed this week on a shadowy, vague plan to keep the Kings in the city they have called home for 26 years, even as relocation to Anaheim looks inevitable. T.V. sports anchor Jim Crandell (a Sacramento institution) reported only the slightest details on the plan Wednesday; Ailene Voisin of the Sacramento Bee divulged more on Friday. The jist is that two men who were heavily involved in the Kings' move to Sacramento from Kansas City a quarter-century ago are working on a plan to keep the team in town.

Two members of the Sacramento Kings' original management group - architect Rann Haight and executive Greg Van Dusen - are heading the latest efforts for a sports-and-entertainment facility that would keep the franchise in town. [...]

Sources on Thursday characterized the effort as a "below-the-radar, grass-roots effort" that has gone on for more than a year. It would involve both the city and county of Sacramento, perhaps extending to several counties within the Kings' season-ticket base.

But is it too late? The Maloof family, which owns the Kings franchise, has been in negotiations with Honda Center operator Henry Samueli for at least two months, and the situation has progressed to the point where the Anaheim City Council is expected to approve a bond issuance to fund Honda Center upgrades -- including an NBA practice facility -- as soon as next week.

Voisin reports that the Maloofs are being updated on the Haight-Van Dusen plan regularly, but does not reveal how inclined the family is to canceling the Anaheim plan should the Sacramento plan continue to take shape.

The Maloofs are expected to decide whether to relocate by April 18. The decision must receive majority approval from the other NBA franchise owners.