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Sacramento deal unravels

Sacramento's arena saga took another turn when Joe Maloof announced yesterday that the Kings' owners would take their ball and go home. For now. From the Sacramento Bee (h/t to reader Mike Marshall):

The Maloof family has walked away from talks with the city and county of Sacramento over the terms of locating a new arena in the downtown railyard -- a heavy blow to community leaders trying to sell the arena proposal to the public.

"There are no more negotiations; we've already discussed all the issues," Joe Maloof said in a phone interview Wednesday. "They know what we need. We've told them."

The disagreement centers on parking, the size of the arena site, and on what, if any, kinds of retail or housing also would go into the sports and entertainment zone.

The pro-arena forces were left Wednesday with the very real possibility that they may be campaigning for a new sales tax on the Nov. 7 ballot to build an arena in the railyard without the owners of the NBA franchise on board -- and without their money to help pay for the campaign.

What's next, I wonder? Welcome to the theater of the absurd!