NBA Commissioner David Stern said the board voted 22-8 to turn down a bid by Kings owners Joe and Gavin Maloof to gain approval for a move in advance of a sale to a Seattle investor group led by hedge fund manager Chris Hansen.
"This was not an anti-Seattle vote, it was a pro-Sacramento vote," Stern said during a press conference.
A group headed by Silicon Valley tech entrepreneur Vivek Ranadive has expressed an interest in buying the Kings and keeping them in Sacramento with a new, publicly subsidized arena, but was offering substantially less money than Hansen's group.
There had been reports the Maloof family threatened it would refuse to sell to the Ranadive group and instead would sell a minority share to Hansen if the move was rejected, but Stern said that didn't happen.
"It is my expectation that we will be able to make a deal with the Maloofs and the Ranadive group to transfer title in Sacramento," the commissioner said.
Stern said the NBA would "continue a dialogue" with the Seattle investors on the possibility of placing an expansion team in the city.