And-Ones: Franchise Valuations, G League, Two-Way Deals

We’re likely still a few weeks away from Forbes’ publication of its annual NBA franchise valuations, which are typically revealed during the first half of February. However, new sports-business website Sportico has gotten the jump on Forbes in 2021, trying its hand at projecting the values of all 30 NBA teams.

According to Peter J. Schwartz of Sportico, the average NBA franchise is worth nearly $2.4 billion. That projection dipped slightly as a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic, since teams around the league have missed out on anticipated revenues as a result of playing without fans. However, the fact that the NBA’s national revenues have remained relatively stable means Sportico’s projected valuations have only dipped about two percent.

In Sportico’s view, the Knicks ($5.42 billion), Warriors ($5.21 billion), and Lakers ($5.14 billion) are far and away the most valuable NBA franchises, followed by the Nets ($3.4 billion) at No. 4. The Pelicans ($1.35 billion), Grizzlies ($1.36 billion), and Timberwolves ($1.43 billion) are at the other end of the spectrum.

Here are more odds and ends from around the basketball world:

  • The NBA G League announced in December of 2019 that it would be expanding to Mexico City for 2020/21, but given the circumstances surrounding this season, the Capitanes franchise won’t be debuting now after all. While the league has been quiet about its plans for that Mexico-based franchise, the club is now expected to begin playing in the NBAGL in 2021/22, says Marc Stein of The New York Times.
  • Although most coaches and general managers around the NBA support the idea of giving teams a third two-way contract slot – an idea being discussed by the league and the players’ union – some would have liked to see a different tweak made to the two-way rules, writes Jared Weiss of The Athletic. “We are in support of (the proposal),” a Western Conference GM said. “But (we) might prefer to have current two-ways with unlimited game-day restrictions.” Players on two-way contracts are limited to being active for 50 of 72 games this season.
  • In an interesting article for HoopsHype, Michael Scotto explores the “art of the smokescreen,” speaking to agents and team executives about why they might be motivated to leak information to reporters.
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17 thoughts on “And-Ones: Franchise Valuations, G League, Two-Way Deals

  1. The Howler

    It is hard to reconcile the values of the teams and the owners pleading poverty about this year or any other year. If an owner is “scraping” by I suggest that you sell your team to ease your financial “pain.”

    It also puts the “tax” in perspective. If an owner could put their team on the verge of winning a championship by entering into the tax but doesn’t, sell the team and invest the money in Bitcoin or something. You will easily recoup your “tax” money when you sell so the chance for glory is worth it.

    • Marty McRae

      100% correct on all points, do you know how dumb it is to actually write on here that Lacob and the Warriors shouldnt spend more money because of they will pay more tax? Maddening, it shows a refusal to accept reality and logic. Knicks, Warriors and Lakers should be spending as much money as feasibly possible every single year and only the last two can say they do.

      Gotta love how professional sports is a business, an industry packed with lucrative careers that surpass doctors, yet team owners are often said to view owning a team like a hobby that they don’t have to invest in if they have other investments. Really cool to have that at the top, a careless leader who doesnt even really want to be here. Awesome. NBA and MLB needs to get its owners to spend, or get off the pot for someone who will. Plenty of billionaires out there who certainly would invest in winning.

      • “Knicks, Warriors and Lakers should be spending as much money as feasibly possible every single year ”

        I agree on almost everything you said here, but I’m not sure I agree on the Knicks. Dolan has never been shy about throwing tons of money around, but it certainly did not get the Knicks anywhere. The Knicks are a rare example where a mega-rich owner should pull back for a few years and let the team develop a little before splurging on pieces to put them over the top.

      • Goingyard16

        MLB yes.NBA? How. The convoluted payroll rule in the NBA make it almost impossible not to spend. Yes there are many teams who do pile up money during the course of the season in order to make a play on a free agent the following year. And yes having failed that they do attempt to sign competent players to fill out the roster. All teams under NBA rules can acquire mega players because the system allows them too. Some teams like the Hawks, Pelicans, Mavericks, T-Wolves tend to want more well rounded roster payroll wise but it will be interesting to see what they do when Young, Williamson, Doncic, and Anthony-Towns become available.
        The payroll structure in MLB is terrible and something needs to be done soon.
        Low payroll teams continue to cheat their fans every year while rich teams dominate the sport. A payroll ceiling and floor needs to happen in MLB. There is no reason that any MLB team can’t spend at least $100 million in payroll.

  2. brownscavsr4me

    Here’s an idea. Expand regular roster limits. Why can’t NBA teams have 17 players and 3 two-way contracts, for example? Cap space has been consistently rising (besides this season) and there are so many players that have talent that never get to show it. Most teams nowadays rather have a one-and-done young player with some potential than a 4 year college player with some proven skill. If there are more roster spots, there are more basketball players that deserve a chance, even if they never see the court. Also, there won’t be a need for player-injury exemptions because teams will already have the major depth.

    • Marty McRae

      Could also just add more teams to fit the growing population of the world game.

      • brownscavsr4me

        I agree completely, in the end I just feel that a league of just 510 players including 2-way contracts doesn’t do justice to the popularity of the game worldwide.

    • Wouldn’t adding more players to the roster reduce each player’s salary a certain amount? I think the players receive a certain percentage of the whole pie so more slices equal smaller slices? Am I seeing that correctly? So I think that’s why they’re not readily accepting a plan to have 20 guys.

  3. Jason Lancaster

    Anyone who likes to get mad about players “tampering” should read the smokescreen article and commit it to memory.

    Teams and agents are working the media to manipulate things, and doing so all within the NBA’s tampering rules. I don’t understand how someone can know that teams and agents are manipulative, and still get mad at players for trying to recruit one another.

  4. Marty McRae

    Imagine literally being “far and away the most valuable NBA franchise” and have commenters on here saying “Noooooo they can’t keep spending money on playerssss what about taxesssss wahhhh” hahahaa this like a how to self-own 101

      • Nice username by the way. Marginally creative. I can’t be the only one wondering what you would do :)

  5. KnickerbockerAl

    Sports franchises are a business. It’s the business of entertainment. Therefore have nothing to do with everyday folks like us. These are talents most of you don’t understand. No one spends money cause they have it. There’s a right way and a wrong way to run any business. Just look at all the music talent that is broke today. No owner owes you anything. Sports business is about building a winner. And sustaining it as long as possible (Pats). Every sport is different. It’s dumb to think you know how to spend their money. No reason to pay a tax when you are rebuilding. No reason to overpay players just cause you have cap space. There are cheap owners and bad owners. No one forces you to support them. It’s easy to see why a major city is the most valued. I can tell you Knicks ownership is not cheap. Dolan has thrown away more money than LA and GS put together. Problem is he doesn’t know how to build a winner. Thinks he can buy one. How’s that worked out the last 40 yrs. Dolans dad gave n let him run MSG, Knicks, Rangers at age 28. This rebuilding that Phil Jackson started 5 yrs ago. And Dolan almost blew up with 4 coaches. Has never been done under his watch. It’s why it’s so important for Knick fans. True rebuilding is only done thru the draft. So here we are “In Thibs we Trust”.

    • Jason Lancaster

      But Dolan is also cheap – he fired a bunch of senior staff during the last lockout just to save a few bucks. And he was practically shamed into paying staff during the COVID pause.

      I don’t disagree with a lot of what you said, but there’s ample evidence that Dolan is penny wise and pound foolish.

      • KnickerbockerAl

        He’s a business man. When it comes to Knicks team. He’s never been cheap. It’s probably a ego thing too. Like he’ll buy his way thru issues. He is a controlling owner. I’m sure he manages his money with workers. He’s always spent money with team. Most times not wisely. He basically gave away 300-400 mill. To Isiah and Larry Brown era (players). Then gave away our picks for yrs and capped us out for yrs thereafter. Then the Mello yrs. He paid Phil to go away. Then signed Fizdale to 4 yrs and fired him after 30 gms. He spends money on both Knicks and Rangers. He’s built a sports empire with MSG sports and TV.

        • Goingyard16

          Are you a Knicks fan who attended their games? It’s easy to say that the owners don’t own fans anything. Then what’s the purpose of having fans? Play every game in MSG in front of empty seats every year because the owner doesn’t owe us anything even though we fork out $85 – $150 A GAME to watch them.

      • Right. He’s blown absurd amounts of money on garbage players past their prime, but will skrimp around the edges. It’s almost like Dolan is a world class a-hole with zero basketball knowledge who treats the Knicks like a fashion symbol.

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