At the beginning of this decade, the NBA was not on firm footing. More than half of the league’s teams were losing money, and negotiations on a new collective bargaining agreement were looming.
Today, however, the NBA has undeniable momentum, buoyed by hefty broadcast agreements and superstars like LeBron James and Steph Curry. With interest in the NFL flagging in the U.S., professional basketball appears to be seizing the opportunity to win over sports fans and grow the popularity of the league.
This momentum has pushed team valuations to new heights, with the median team now being worth a solid $1.56 billion.
What are the exact valuations of individual franchises in the league, and how are these values derived? Let’s dig into Forbes’ annual NBA Valuations Ranking to learn more.
Breaking down team value
Forbes has broken down the value of an NBA team valuations into four components:
Sport: The revenue shared equally among all teams in the league
Market: City and market size
Arena: Revenues from sources such as attendance and premium seating
Brand: The actual value of the team’s brand
Every single team in the NBA is now valued at over $1 billion, and all but one team (the Cavaliers) were profitable last year.
For teams like the Knicks and Lakers, it’s easy to see how their huge market size contributes to their sky-high valuations. The former is currently the second-most-valuable sports franchise in America, tied with the New York Yankees.
While the biggest teams are worth more than double the NBA median value, the rising tide appears to be lifting all boats. The median team value has risen steadily and is up nearly 200% since 2014.
The biggest story in basketball over recent years has been the ascension of the Golden State Warriors.
Making the NBA finals four seasons in a row – and winning three of those match-ups – has had a massive impact on the team’s value, which has shot up 367% over the last five years. As the team moves to the brand new Chase Center next season, Golden State may even have a shot at surpassing the Knicks or Lakers in overall valuation.
Here are the top five gainers over the past five years:
The teams with the highest revenue-per-fan are typically in smaller markets like Salt Lake City and Oklahoma City, though both cities are unique in that an NBA franchise is their only professional sports team.
The struggling Chicago Bulls comes in near the bottom by revenue-per-fan, despite being the fourth most valuable team in the league.
In recent years, LeBron James has been one of the most electrifying personalities in professional sports, however, his influence on the NBA is now proving to be a double-edged sword. Since LeBron moved time zones from Cleveland to Los Angeles, NBA viewership is down – a dip that is particularly pronounced during the earlier Eastern Conference time slot.
Despite the slight dip in viewership, NBA teams are more profitable than they’ve ever been, and as the NBA turns its sights eastward to China, today’s valuations may seem modest in a few years time.
Ranked: The World’s Largest Stadiums
The U.S. is known for its massive arenas, but in a top 10 ranking of the world’s largest stadiums, two other countries take the lead.
Ranking The World’s Largest Stadiums
From football games to live concerts, stadiums serve as a gathering place for some of life’s most exciting moments.
While some stadiums are famous for their history, others are truly massive in size, capable of seating over 100,000 people at once. In this graphic, we’ve ranked the 10 largest stadiums in the world by seating capacity, with Madison Square Garden included as a reference point.
Data and Highlights
As shown in the graphic above, the world’s largest stadium belongs to India. Named after the country’s Prime Minister, the Narendra Modi Stadium was designed to host cricket games.
See below for the full list in tabular format.
|1||Narendra Modi Stadium||🇮🇳 India||Ahmedabad||132,000|
|2||Rungrado 1st of May Stadium||🇰🇵 North Korea||Pyongyang||114,000|
|3||Michigan Stadium||🇺🇸 US||Ann Arbor, MI||107,601|
|4||Beaver Stadium||🇺🇸 US||State College, PA||106,572|
|5||Ohio Stadium||🇺🇸 US||Columbus, OH||102,780|
|6||Kyle Field||🇺🇸 US||College Station, TX||102,733|
|7||Neyland Stadium||🇺🇸 US||Knoxville, TN||102,455|
|8||Tiger Stadium||🇺🇸 US||Baton Rouge, LA||102,321|
|9||Darrell K Royal - Texas Memorial Stadium||🇺🇸 US||Austin, TX||100,119|
|10||Bryant-Denny Stadium||🇺🇸 US||Tuscaloosa, AL||100,077|
The number two spot is held by Rungrado 1st of May Stadium, which is surprisingly located in North Korea. It was completed in 1989 with the purpose of hosting the 13th World Festival of Youth and Students, and is now used to host various government events.
It’s interesting to note that this arena initially had a higher capacity of 150,000 people, but was reduced to 114,000 after renovations in 2014.
Looking further down the list, the third to tenth largest stadiums belong to the United States. All of these arenas are primarily used for college football, serving as the home field for their respective university team.
A shocking fact is that these arenas are significantly larger than NFL stadiums. For example, the largest NFL stadium is MetLife Stadium, which has a seating capacity of 82,500.
While just three countries are represented in the top 10 list, there is plenty of geographical diversity once we look a little further down. Shown below are the 11th to 14th largest stadiums in the world.
Camp Nou and FNB Stadium are two historic soccer stadiums which have both hosted a FIFA World Cup tournament. Camp Nou is owned by FC Barcelona, the world’s third most valuable soccer club.
New Administrative Capital Stadium is expected to replace the Cairo International Stadium as Egypt’s new national arena, and could be used to host the Olympics or a FIFA World Cup in the future if called upon.
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