LeBron Increased Value of Heat by 17%, Dropped Cavs' by 26%
The Miami Heat may be the most talked about NBA team this season, but they aren't the most valuable. However, the signing of LeBron James and Chris Bosh saw the team's value increase by 17 percent since last year, according to Forbes.com. That's the biggest increase in value over one year in the league. Conversely, the Cleveland Cavaliers that James left behind saw their value plummet by 26 percent. No wonder Cavs owner Dan Gilbert still seems pissed.
Forbes.com estimates that the Heat is now worth $475 million. Which would make them the 7th most valuable team in the NBA. Forbes took factors like "sport," the market, brand management and the stadium into account.
Here's a list of their top ten:
1. New York Knicks
2. Los Angeles Lakers
3. Chicago Bulls
4. Boston Celtics
5. Houston Rockets
6. Dallas Mavericks
7. Miami Heat
8. Phoenix Suns
9. San Antonio Spurs
10. Toronto Raptors
Historical success and big markets seem to have the biggest impact on a team's ranking, though we're surprised that the Toronto Raptors, the team Bosh escaped, is still in the top 10. The top team, the Knicks, have an estimated value of $655 million, while the Lakers aren't far behind at $653.
LeBron's former team in Cleveland saw their value sink by 26 percent to $366 million, making them the 15th most valuable in the league.
Overall the average NBA franchise saw its value increase by one percent last year, but most are still below the value of their pre-recession high.
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