Given the large loss of revenue due to the pandemic, NBA commissioner Adam Silver admits the league is taking the possibility of expansion more seriously, according to USA Today’s Chris Bumbaca.
“It’s sort of the manifest destiny of the league that you expand at some point,” Silver said. “I’d say it’s caused us to maybe dust off some of the analyses on the economic and competitive impacts of expansion. We’ve been putting a little bit more time into it than we were pre-pandemic. But certainly not to the point that expansion is on the front burner.”
Silver has dismissed expansion in recent years, as ESPN’s Tim Bontemps notes (Twitter link).
The league hasn’t added a team since Charlotte came into the league in 2004. Seattle lost its franchise to Oklahoma City in 2008. Seattle is expected to get heavy consideration for a new franchise if the league expands again.
One of the issues with expansion, according to Silver, is that the league is already struggling with competitive balance.
“It’s not a secret that we don’t have 30 competitive teams at any given time right now when you go into the season, measured by likelihood of ability to win a championship,” he said.