Forbes Ranks New York Knicks as NBA’s Most Valuable Franchise


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The New York Knicks are once again the NBA's highest-valued franchise, according to Forbes.

New York returns to the top spot after ceding it to the Los Angeles Lakers for a year.

The Knicks are valued at $3 billion, a 20 percent increase over their $2.5 billion valuation during the 2014-15 season.

Beyond a revamped roster, not-so-terrible record, and the arrival of exciting rookie Kristaps Porzingis, Forbes states the Knicks "increase is driven by a new cable deal and having the highest premium-seating revenue in the league."

The Lakers come in second at $2.7 billion, followed by the Chicago Bulls, Boston Celtics, and Los Angeles Clippers.

Here's the entire list, in screenshot form:

A few takeaways:

  1. The Brooklyn Nets are the only team with a negative operating income, which is great for the league but terrible for the Nets.
  2. The Golden State Warriors had the largest increase in valuation since last year, at 46 percent.
  3. The Oklahoma City Thunder had the smallest, at 2 percent.

For an idea of just how insane the returns are for NBA owners, here's ESPN's Darren Rovell:

New York's current owners bought the Knicks, the NHL's Rangers, Madison Square Garden and the MSG Network for $1.1 billion in 1994. … The most impressive rise in franchise value is the Golden State Warriors, purchased by Joe Lacob and Peter Guber for a then-record $450 million in July 2010. Forbes says the Warriors … are now the sixth-most valuable franchise at $1.9 billion. … The Dallas Mavericks were bought by Mark Cuban in 2000 for $285 million. The team is now worth $1.4 billion, according to Forbes, which is a 250 percent jump over the last 16 years, factoring for inflation. … Michael Jordan, who owns 93 percent of the Charlotte Hornets, bought 80 percent of the team on a $275 million valuation in 2010. Forbes says the team is now worth $750 million. … Jerry Buss bought the Lakers from Jack Kent Cooke in 1979 for $16 million. By 1990, the team was said to be worth a league-record $200 million by Financial World Magazine. … The least valuable team in the league is the New Orleans Pelicans at $650 million. The NBA sold the team to Tom Benson for $338 million in 2012.

That's all well and good, but if I were a billionaire (and how do you know I'm not?), I'm buying low on the Philadelphia 76ers.

Ranked 28th out of 30 teams, the Sixers have a populated East Coast city and, despite their perennially awful record, a boatload of valuable assets to burn whenever they're good and ready to burn them and become a competitive team again.