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News, observations and reader questions about the Sacramento Kings and the NBA.

January 2, 2008
The Maloofs in Hawaii paradise

Joe and Gavin Maloof are as passionate as they come in the realm of NBA team owners.
The Kings' two-headed piggy bank doesn't just cut checks and watch their investment from a distance like so many other franchise-funders, continuing to live and die with every win even through these down times and always craving a championship.
And while it won't likely rid them of the 2002 Western Conference Finals ulcer that remains, they surely drew satisfaction from the Sugar Bowl on New Year's Day. The game itself was nothing special, just a 41-10 blowout with Georgia rolling over the University of Hawaii in New Orleans. But the Warriors from the islands had shocked the college football world just by being there, entering with a 12-0 record and as one of just three teams from non Bowl Championship Series conferences to ever play in a BCS game. And while programs like Georgia typically have a recruiting budget of some $500,000 to find its talent, Hawaii did it with a recruiting budget of approximately $50,000.
Which is where the Maloofs come in.
Back in November, they matched the school's recruiting budget by donating $50,000 to the program's booster club. As Marty Mac noted in his latest column, the Maloofs deserve credit for being quite the charitable family. For their sake, it's unfortunate that perception is reality. But without question, these guys do far more than party in their Vegas Casino and dine on $6,000 Happy Meals. And who knows what Hawaii coach June Jones can make happen next season with the unexpected boon in his program's bank account? - Sam Amick



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