Culture of Hoops

Major sponsors are leaving the Sacramento Kings

Until recently, ever since buying into the Sacramento Kings as minority owners in 1998 and then a majority stake in 1999, the Maloofs have been well-respected NBA owners. However, that has all changed with their obvious interest to move the team away from Sacramento to more “plush” surroundings. Although the rumored move to Virginia Beach wouldn’t seem to fit that criteria of “plush.” The Maloofs would love to move to Anaheim, but that’s not going to happen under David Stern’s watch.

So, with all that said, the ambiguity surrounding where the team will be located in the future is not exactly endearing ad sponsors to re-up with the Kings. However, the Maloofs themselves are making things difficult as reported by CBS Sacramento:

It’s a money meltdown for the Sacramento Kings as their biggest sponsor is splitting, and they’re not the only ones.

One of the Kings’ most loyal corporate sponsors is taking a bite out of the owners’ already rickety revenue structure.

Carl’s Jr. once touted them as billionaire brothers in an ad campaign, but now the fast food company tells CBS13 that its cravings for the Maloofs are over.

“Carl’s Jr. is not seeking naming rights for the arena in Sacramento. While we have sponsored the Kings in the past, we will not be renewing our team sponsorship this season,” a company statement read.

CBS13 has learned the Maloofs are only offering companies one-year sponsorship deals, no long-term commitments. As a result, some of the local companies who came together in a $10 million sponsorship pledge last year are also out.

It seems like the Maloofs are relatively fine with losing sponsors with their move to abstain from any long-term commitments, which at face value seems idiotic. However, when the team moves or is sold… and one of those things are definitely happening… the Maloofs will make up for it in the sale or relocation price. Sure, they haven’t been good business owners recently, but they can (and will) score a major haul in due time. However, they’re not winning any likability contests. Further in CBS Sacremento’s story:

“Sponsors are looking to be associated with an enterprise that’s respected and successful,” said Assemblyman Roger Dickinson.

Dickinson blames the Maloofs’ reneged negotiations for the business backlash, the most recent after Mayor Kevin Johnson’s effort to build an arena at the railyards.

“People in Sacramento want to know that the ownership cares and is committed to Sacramento. There’s no indication that that’s the case,” said Dickinson.

This is basically one big mess and there is no regard to loyal Sacramento Kings fans. They definitely deserve better, but the Maloofs aren’t doing anyone any favors. They’re looking for the big score in the future at the price of losing sponsors in the now.

You can contact and find me on Twitter @BallerMindFrame or e-mail me at [email protected].

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