Seattle Makes Bid To Keep Sonics

SEATTLE (AP) — The city of Seattle is making a last-ditch effort to save the SuperSonics and is calling on some heavy hitters in local business.

Mayor Greg Nickels unveiled a $300 million renovation plan for KeyArena on Thursday and announced a group of local businessmen was interested in buying the team from owner Clay Bennett.

The ownership group includes Microsoft Corp. Chief Executive Steve Ballmer, Costco Wholesale Corp. Chief Executive Jim Sinegal, wireless entrepreneur John Stanton, and Seattle developer Matt Griffin.

Under the city’s proposal, the group would pay for $150 million in upgrades, and taxpayers would cover the other half — with $75 million coming from Seattle and $75 million coming from existing state taxes.

Bennett has applied to relocate Sonics to Oklahoma City and has said his team is not for sale.