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Sponsors returning to Kings despite the Maloofs

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The Maloofs killed a whole lot of goodwill in Sacramento last April, but the Kings are still drawing a good number of sponsors.

Jed Jacobsohn - Getty Images

The Sacramento Bee followed up on wide reports (initiated by Carmichael Dave on his internet radio show and furthered by CBS 13 this weekend) that a number of major sponsors have fled from the Kings due to the Maloofs' unwillingness to commit to multi-year deals and general grossness. Among the sponsors who reportedly dashed out the side door: Carl's Jr. (a huge long-time sponsor), Sleep Train, Sutter Health and Jiffy Lube.

Wednesday's Bee story, however, promotes just how many sponsors the Kings now have, possibly owing to the team's new small business program that lets smaller firms make smaller commitments to push their products on Kings fans in smaller ways. So because of programs like that, the Kings can say that they have more sponsors than ever. Note that they are not saying that sponsor revenue is at its highest point ever. More firms are paying less to advertise with the Kings.

Also of note: Thunder Valley Casino is sticking around, and Sleep Train claims that nothing has changed in its arena naming talks, which is the opposite of what we heard last week. Stay tuned on that note.

The best part of the Bee story on the topic, however, is absolutely 100 percent this quote from Western Health spokesman Rick Heron:

"It was a consideration that the ownership appears not to be as stable as one would want," Heron said. He said he believes the team still has solid fan support. "Unfortunately, Joe and Gavin, the Maloof family, make it tough. They test that loyalty."

Just beautiful.