1. New York Knicks ($4.6 Billion)
Despite years of having no success on the basketball court, the Knicks continue to become more and more valuable as one of the most recognizable teams in the league. As of 2020, the Knicks are valued at $4.6 billion and have seen a 15% increase in the past year. Basketball franchises are growing at the fastest rate of any major American sports teams and it doesn’t look like they will be slowing down anytime soon. The Knicks market is the biggest in the league so no matter their basketball success they will always be at or near the top of this list.
2. Los Angeles Lakers ($4.4 Billion)
The other big market team at the top of our list is, no surprise, the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers are worth $4.4 billion in 2020 and have seen a 19% increase in value over the past year. They are also 2nd only to the Knicks in revenue, pulling in $434 million this past year. The brand recognition, along with the market, and arena easily make the Lakers one of the top tier teams in the league. If they could win more championships in the coming years with LeBron, we could see them possibly overtake the Knicks for the #1 spot on our list.
3. Golden State Warriors ($4.3 Billion)
The Warriors have had the most recent success of all the teams on this list and it has paid off for Joe Lacob & the other owners of the team. They purchased the Warriors for $450 million in 2010 and in 2020 they are worth $4.3 billion dollars. They are now generating $440 million a year in revenue alone. Another thing that is huge in the Warriors increase in value is their new downtown San Francisco stadium that was privately funded and is worth $1.6 billion dollars. Suites at this stadium cost over $1 million dollars annually and will be huge in the revenue department for Golden State.
4. Chicago Bulls ($3.2 Billion)
Before we get to the Bulls there is a big drop off of over $1 billion dollars from 3 to 4 on this list. Everyone remembers the Jordan Bulls of the 90s but the team itself hasn’t been very good in a long time but like the Bears, their market props them up quite a bit. The Bulls grew 10% this past year to be valued at $3.2 billion and according to Forbes, their market is worth over $1 billion. Another big part of this is the fact that they are the biggest market in the NBA with only 1 team, so it doesn’t have to be shared. The Bulls are here to stay, despite their struggles on the court.
5. Boston Celtics ($3.1 Billion)
The Celtics make our list valued by Forbes at $3.1 billion dollars and have been one of the most consistently good teams over the past decade. They haven’t won many championships, but they are always competing. The Celtics have made the playoffs in 11 of the past 12 years and boast one of the best attendances in the entire league. Last year they generated $304 million dollars in income and at number 5 on our list, they are the only team with a metro area population of under $5 million.
6. Los Angeles Clippers ($2.6 Billion)
Former CEO of Microsoft, Steve Ballmer, bought the Clippers in 2014 for a hefty price of $2 billion dollars but over the coming years, we will realize it was worth it. The Clippers have turned into a competing team almost every season and they are about to branch out on their own for the first time. Ballmer is privately funding a brand new 18,500 seat arena in Inglewood that will host all Clippers home games. Their lease with the Staples Center expires in 2024 and after the completion of this new project, we will likely see this valuation skyrocket.
7. Brooklyn Nets ($2.5 Billion)
Another team that was sold recently was the Brooklyn Nets. They were sold last year to Joseph Tsai for $3.3 billion dollars which included acquiring the operating company for the Barclays Center. The Nets themselves are worth $2.5 billion dollars and will likely see an increase when the New York Islanders leave Brooklyn in what has been described as a money-losing deal for the Nets. They aren’t as big as the Knicks in New York but the market is big enough for both of them to survive. When the Nets start competing and selling out games we will likely see their valuation increase by a healthy amount.
8. Houston Rockets ($2.475 Billion)
The Rockets valuation according to Forbes in 2020 is set at $2.475 billion, which makes them the most valuable NBA franchise in the state of Texas. However, this valuation could go down based on what we have yet to see throughout the year 2020. In October 2019, Daryl Morey voicing support for protestors in Hong Kong, which China did not take lightly. Relationships have been severed across China which is a big hit because the Rockets were one of the most popular teams over there. However, as we stand they are still one of the top 10 most valuable teams in the league.
9. Dallas Mavericks ($2.4 Billion)
Outspoken Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban bought the franchise in 2000 for $280 million and today they are worth $2.4 billion. Mavericks TV ratings have skyrocketed with the arrival of Luka Doncic, up 88% in the local markets. And despite not being the most successful team as of late, they own a sell-out streak of over 800 home games. The DFW area is one of the largest and fastest-growing in the country and with the success of the team gaining steam as well this is a team we can look to climb up the list in the near future.
10. Toronto Raptors ($2.1 Billion)
The NBA’s lone Canadian team, the Toronto Raptors, close out our list at #10 with a value of $2.1 billion dollars. They won their first NBA title in their history last season which led to record revenues and profits. Before the season they also signed a new $640 million dollar naming rights deal for their arena. The Toronto market isn’t the biggest basketball market but it is one of the largest metro areas in Canada and with the increasing popularity of basketball the Raptors could be a force up north.