Las Vegas or Seattle could become the new home of the NBA’s Milwaukee Bucks if taxpayer funding for half the cost of a new arena isn’t quickly approved by lawmakers.
Bucks president Peter Feigin told lawmakers that the NBA would look to relocate the team to one of those two cities without public funding for half of a proposed $500 million (456 million euros) arena so construction can start this year, the Milwaukee Business Journal reported.
Feigin said a clause in the purchase deal for the team by a new ownership group 14 months ago for $550 million allowed the league to buy back the club for a $25 million profit unless a new arena was in the works by October or November.
“The window is closing,” Feigin warned. “We can’t months, even weeks, to start the public process.”
Money for the new arena was dropped from the state budget last week, according to the report.
A lease for the Bucks in their current home arena, which opened in 1988, ends in 2017 after just two more NBA seasons. The Bucks were founded in Milwaukee in 1968 as an expansion team and won their only NBA crown three years later.
A new arena is under construction in US gambling mecca Las Vegas without a sports team tenant while a new arena proposal in Seattle hinges upon having an NBA team agree to move to the former home of the SuperSonics, who became the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2008. – Agence France-Presse