ATLANTA – Proving that winning is not the key element when it comes to team value, Forbes reported the Atlanta Hawks increased in value 13 percent last season to $1.3 billion. The estimated value leaves the Hawks as the 24th most valuable franchise of the league’s 30 teams.
Forbes released its 2019 ranking of most valuable NBA teams Wednesday and listed the perennially playoff-challenged New York Knicks as the most valuable franchise in the league at $4 billion. According to Forbes, the Knicks saw their franchise value increase by 11 percent last year and had an operating income of $155 million.
Rounding out the top five of the most valuable NBA teams on Forbes’ list: the Los Angeles Lakers ($3.7 billion); Golden State Warriors ($3.5 billion); Chicago Bulls ($2.9 billion); and Boston Celtics ($2.8 billion).
According to Forbes, the Hawks had $215 million in revenue and an operating income of approximately $42 million. Measured by revenue, the Hawks were ranked 26th in the league, but when measured by operating income, the Hawks were 21st in the league.
The Hawks have not been to the playoffs in the last two years and are in a full rebuild mode. Last season, the Hawks were 24-58 and the team is off to an 18-35 start to the 2018-2019 season. Before last season, the Hawks had been to the playoffs every season since the 2007-2008 season.
Only one team in the NBA saw its value drop year-over-year, the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavaliers’ value dropped by four percent last year to $1.275 billion. The Cavaliers also had a negative operating income of -$13 million, Forbes reported. The Cavaliers also might have trouble regaining any value as they lost LeBron James in the offseason and have been near the bottom of the league this year.