(SEATTLE) — The Maloof family, which has controlling interest of the Sacramento Kings, has agreed to sell the franchise to a group led by hedge fund manager Chris Hansen whose intent is to move the team to Seattle, the NBA confirmed Monday.
The Seattle group hopes to move the team to Seattle for next season and is expected to file for relocation by the NBA’s March 1 deadline.
“We are happy to announce that we have entered into a binding agreement with the Maloofs to purchase a controlling interest in the Sacramento Kings NBA franchise,” Hansen said in a statement released Monday. “The sale is obviously subject to approval by the NBA Board of Governors, and we look forward to working with the League in the coming months to consummate the transaction.”
The deal would send the 65 percent majority stake of the team to a Seattle group led by Hansen and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. That 65 percent represents the 53 percent of the team that the Maloofs own and 12 percent minority owner Bob Hernreich.
ESPN sources say there has been no agreement on the remaining 35 percent of the team, which is owned by minority shareholders.
Seattle hasn’t had a team since 2008, when its team moved to Oklahoma City.
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Jill Martin, CNN