City Beat

Sacramento mayor calls meeting with Maloofs 'productive'

Mayor Kevin Johnson flew to Las Vegas today to revive talks with the Sacramento Kings' ownership on a downtown arena.

After a week of trading accusations about the collapse of the arena project, the mayor arrived at the Palms Casino, whose chairman is Kings co-owner George Maloof.

A Maloof spokesman confirmed the meeting. Eric Rose said the mayor showed up this afternoon unannounced at the Palms Hotel. "George graciously accepted his meeting," Rose said.

The late afternoon meeting lasted about an hour.

"The meeting was cordial; however, nothing definitive resulted from the meeting," Rose said in a statement issued late this afternoon. "The Maloof family will not have any further comments on the meeting."

In a statement, the mayor's office said the meeting was "productive."

"Although the core principles of the deal weren't discussed, both sides agreed that open lines of communication would be in the everyone's best interest moving ahead," the statement read. "In that spirit, the parties agreed to have a follow-up conservation early next week."

The mayor plans to attend the Kings home game tonight to present the key to the city to former Cincinnati Royals superstar Oscar Robertson.

The arena project appeared to have died last Friday, following a two-hour meeting between Johnson and the Maloofs at the NBA owners' meetings in New York. Johnson said the Maloofs pulled out of the deal, while the family said they had never agreed to anything beyond a general "framework" of a deal.

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