Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The NBA is a little more than one season removed from a brutal lockout that centered around a claim the team owners are not making money. But, the Sacramento Kings owners have agreed to sell the team for $525 million and that’s drawn the ire of Miami Heat superstar LeBron James.
The Kings were purchased by the Maloof family 15 years ago for $156 million. Since then, with a few years as an exception, the Maloof family has run the Kings franchise into the ground. The value of the franchise though has risen to the current valuation of $525 million.
That prompted James to tweet the following on Sunday.
“So the Kings getting sold for 525M!! And the owners ain’t making no money huh? What the hell we have a lockout for. Get the hell out of here,” James tweeted.
James’ point is that while the league owners who pushed the lockout claimed poverty and a loss of money, they didn’t address the massive increase in value of the respective teams.
For a comparison, when Heat owner Micky Arison purchased the Heat in 1988, the team was worth approximately $158 million. As of January 2012, according to Forbes, the Heat was worth roughly $457 million.
There is a chance the Kings sale doesn’t go through as Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, also a former NBA star, is trying to get a group of buyers together to convince the NBA’s Board of Governor’s to keep the Kings in Sacramento.