What’s Beef? Why Maloof Family Doesn’t Care For Potential Kings Buyer Ron Burkle


April 26, 2012; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings owners Phil Maloof, George Maloof and Gavin Maloof stand up after the win over the Los Angeles Lakers at Power Balance Pavilion. The Sacramento Kings defeated the Los Angeles Lakers 113-96. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

On the Notorious B.I.G.’s posthumously released album “Life After Death”, the heavyweight rapper poised the question – “what’s beef”?

Unfortunately for Biggie Smalls, everybody’s favorite slang website Urban Dictionary was yet to be created, but with the advancement in technology – we have an answer to his question:

"Beef – to have a grudge or start one with another person."

Beef, is exactly what the Maloof family has for potential Sacramento Kings owner, Ron Burkle. Yet – many don’t understand why or where the distaste came from, but now we have a much more clear picture as to why the Maloof family tends to look the other way when the Burkle name is mentioned.

The other night after the State of the City address, former Sacramento Bee columnist and now writer at NBA.com, Scott Howard-Cooper posted this message on Twitter:

"A former veteran Kings employee, laughing at Maloof enemy Burkle now officially in the mix: “Imagine Joe’s chain smoking right about now!!”"

So where does the dislike for the supermarket giant come from? We know that Ron Burkle attempted to purchase the Sacramento Kings a while back before the Maloof’s had publicly announced any desire to sell and while they might have felt somewhat undermined, it’s hardly a reason to hold such a massive grudge.

Then came the actual sale to the Hansen-Ballmer group in Seattle, where rumors leaked that the Maloof family simply wouldn’t sell to Burkle and may have overlooked a bid from him to sell to the Seattle based group. Yet – still over something so petty as trying to buy the team? Something didn’t add up.

What did add up though was Ron Burkle’s involvement in the Morgans Hotel Group – you know, the one that has been fiddling around with the idea of purchasing the Palms Casino after initially failing with the Hard Rock Casino & Hotel.

This isn’t exactly new information – but it’s information that quietly went past a lot of people, including myself, when Burkle was announced to the board of the Morgans Hotel Group a few years back. The hotel group initially failed with the Hard Rock and went in search of another Las Vegas hotel which apparently, they’ve found, in some capacity:

"Morgans Hotel Group has other property transactions in various stages of completion, including projects in SoHo, New York; Las Vegas, Nevada; Palm Springs, California; Boston, Massachusetts; and Dubai, UAE."

This doesn’t mean that the Morgans Hotel Group is still looking at the Palms per say as MHG has their hands in the upcoming Delano Las Vegas, but we do know Burkle has shown interest in the Palms before and he already has a semi-salty relationship with the Maloof family because of it. It’s pretty clear that at some point(s) the paths of Burkle and the Maloof family have crossed well before his attempt to purchase the Kings.

So now here sits the multi-billionare Ron Burkle, already once attempting to involve himself with the failed Maloof hotel and casino – maybe going for round two – attempting to pick up their failed NBA franchise – being everything the Maloof boys wanted to be. He’s a successful owner of a professional sports franchise with a championship under his belt. He was the driving force behind one of the most beautiful and financially successful sporting venues across the country in Consol Energy Arena. He had/has an unlimited number of successful and profitable businesses that he built from the ground up – others that he took from small time to big thanks to high quality investments. He has an extremely profitable chain of luxury hotels along with success in the food and beverage industry. His resume of friends and colleges (P.Diddy, Bill Clinton, etc) reads as if it’s a guest list to the Presidential inauguration, Oscar’s and Grammy awards, all wrapped into one. He flies around the country in his own customized 757 jet. He is essentially everything the Maloof’s desired but failed to be.

Jealousy, is a bitch.