Not only do the New York Knicks have a better record than the Los Angeles Lakers this season, but their franchise is more valuable as well, at least according to the financially savvy folks at Forbes Magazine.
A Forbes report examining the league’s financial growth over the last year put the Knicks at the top of The Most Valuable NBA Teams list at an estimated $1.1 billion, while the Lakers (first place on the list last year) came in a close second at $1 billion. Here’s a closer look at the top 10:
|1. Knicks||$1.1 b||41 %|
|2. Lakers||$1 b||11 %|
|3. Bulls||$800 m||33 %|
|4. Celtics||$730 m||51 %|
|5. Mavericks||$685 m||38 %|
|6. Heat||$625 m||37 %|
|7. Rockets||$568 m||25 %|
|8. Warriors||$555 m||23 %|
|9. Nets||$530 m||48 %|
|10. Spurs||$527 m||26 %|
Many thought the departure of Jeremy Lin–who sparked an enormous fan response and resulting media sensation last season–would ultimately hurt the New York Knicks’ bottom line, but that has obviously not been the case. Instead, the team’s improved success and renovation of Madison Square Garden has resulted in increased TV ratings and merchandise sales, which in turn, has resulted in a 41% increase in market value for the franchise.
And the Knicks aren’t the only team looking at booming value increases. In fact, the whole league is thriving since last season’s lockout. Forbes is reporting that the average team is worth $509 million, which is a 30% increase over the past year.
It may seem surprising, since may fans were outraged by the shortened season, but TV ratings are up across the board and the new collective bargaining-agreement effectively reduced player costs from 57% of revenues to 50%. So, from the league’s perspective, the lockout was time and money well spent. And of course, when the league is doing well, it’s better for the fans too, as many teams are not hesitating to renovate arenas and expand viewer access.