Inside the Law Firm Helping Mayor’s Effort to Keep the Kings

lawfirmSACRAMENTO-

You don’t make a bid to buy an NBA team without attorneys.

Sitting in Sacrameto’s corner in the fight to keep the Kings: the 130 lawyers of Capitol Mall firm Downey Brand, LLP. Partner Jeff Koewler reached out to Mayor Kevin Johnson 10 days ago.

“I grew up in Sacramento. I spent a lot of time not only in this arena, but the old Kings arena as well and have some very fond memories there and just didn’t want to see the Kings leave,” said Koewler.

Koewler says the push to nail down major equity partners and minority partners introduced Tuesday by Johnson is a major undertaking, but one he and his firm have taken on before.

“You’ve got a large transaction, lots of different players, it’s just keeping everyone aligned and focused and trying to get everyone to the finish line at the same time,” Kowler told FOX40.

The push to keep the Kings, build a new downtown arena and shutdown Seattle’s ‘Sonic’ dreams is moving at warp speed. But, Koewler told FOX40 recent history has made pretty much everyone ready for the challenge.

“Most recently the fiscal cliff drove the timing of a lot of transactions to move quicker than they otherwise will, so, it’s fast, but it’s certainly doable,” Koewler said.

Among the many rounds of applause Tuesday during Johnson’s news conference, the fact Downey Brand is working pro-bono, not expecting a thin red dime for it’s work.

“It’s very unusual for lawyers to get applause, but we’re very pleased about that,” Koewler said.