Tweet of the Day: LeBron James

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Miami Heat All-Star leader LeBron James started his career in Sacramento.

His first game as an NBA rookie for the Cleveland Cavaliers was played in ARCO Arena. (Sheridan covered it).

So, as the day draws nearer that the Kings may soon make their exodus to Seattle, it seemed fitting that the Heat forward would make a nostalgic splash at the rim.

PAST/PRESENT DUNK MAN! 1st and maybe last game at Arco Arena
LeBron James

LeBron James demonstrates that after a decade in the league, he can still soar.

Looking at the dunk, it seems uncanny that at the same arena—more than 9 years later—James would attempt the same style of dunk while being photographed by the exact same photographer [Rocky Widner].

For perspective, in his first game at ARCO, James had 25 points (on 60-percent shooting), nine assists, six rebounds and four steals. Nine seasons—a decade—later, LeBron is still playing at a fierce level.

Saturday, on a team far more talented than his first Cavs squad, he scored 20 points (while shooting 70-percent from the floor), notched seven assists, five rebounds, five steals and two blocks.

For his career (in nine appearances), James averaged 29 points (on 52-percent shooting), 6.7 assists, 7 rebounds, 2.1 steals and 1.1 blocks per game in Sacramento.

If that was LeBron’s last game in Sacramento, at least he left them with a lasting image of excellence.

Kings reach deal for new arena, will stay in Sacramento

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The Kings are staying in Sacramento.

With a league-imposed deadline looming Thursday, city, team and league officials emerged from a meeting in Orlando, Fla. on Monday where a tentative agreement was reached.

Tearful Kings owner Gavin Maloof told the Sacramento Bee, “I’m still emotional. It’s been a long time.”

The Kings and the city of Sacramento – which boasts former NBA All-Star Kevin Johnson as its mayor – have been negotiating for more than a year on financing for a new arena. The team was on the verge of moving to Anaheim last year before a one-year reprieve was reached.

According to an unidentified source who spoke to the Bee, the money is coming from a variety of different sources.

The Maloof family will pay $75 million up front – some of which will come from the sale of Power Balance Pavilion, the team’s current arena – and up to another $75 million during the course of the lease. The Maloofs also will pay off a $67 million loan from the city and open a new, longer-term loan with a lender yet to be established.

Stadium builder AEG will pony up $60 million to operate the arena. AEG will retain all profits up to a certain threshold before a percentage split with the Kings kicks in.

The city will contribute $200 million to $250 million, most of which will come from leasing city parking garages to a private operator. Parking revenue for arena events will go to the city, not the private operator.

Every ticket for every event at the new facility will have a surcharge of 3 percent to 5 percent that will go to a general city fund that should cover the $9 million in annual revenue generated by the public garages.

Smaller revenue streams will come from cell phone tower leases and electronic billboards.

The key figures, including NBA commissioner David Stern, met Sunday in Orlando before the All-Star Game. They were unable to reach a deal but agreed to meet again Monday.

Power Balance Pavilion is the smallest arena in the NBA with a capacity of 17,317. It has 30 luxury suites and 412 club seats. It opened in 1988 as ARCO Arena, adopting the name of the much smaller facility the Kings first called home after moving from Kansas City in 1985.

A sellout streak of 354 games ended with the home opener of the 2007-08 season, when the Kings dropped from near the top of the NBA in attendance to 18th. They have finished in the bottom sixth of the league in every season since and this are 26th at 14,924 per game. Their capacity percentage of 86.2 ranks 17th.