By Ryan Lillis
Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson finally met with the Maloofs on Wednesday.
After days of trying to arrange a meeting, Johnson sat down with the owners of the Sacramento Kings at Power Balance Pavilion before Wednesday night's game against Portland, the mayor's special assistant, R.E. Graswich, said.
The sides met for 40 minutes. In an e-mailed statement, Johnson said the sides "had a candid and productive conversation about our mutual goals and interests."
"I made clear that our community wants the Kings to stay, but we are fully aware that this is ultimately their decision," Johnson said. "The Maloofs understand that regardless of what they choose, I will join with other leaders across the region to fight for what's best for our community. This includes developing a new entertainment and sports complex, with or without the Kings. I fully expect to continue an open, direct and proactive dialogue with the Maloofs as we all move forward."
Kings ownership and city officials have done little, if any, talking in recent weeks as the team considers whether to move to Anaheim.
Team officials reiterated Wednesday they were not commenting publicly on the issue of the team's future or the effort to build a new sports arena in Sacramento.
Also Wednesday, the mayor spoke with National Basketball Association Commissioner David Stern. The conversation was described as "positive" by Graswich, with Johnson updating Stern on the successful effort by Kings fans to sell out Monday's game.
No significant developments on the city's efforts to build an arena or the Kings' negotiations to move to Anaheim were discussed in the mayor's conversation with Stern.