In a sad way, that confirmed the Heat is a middling team fighting to stay on the right side of the eight-nine seed playoff lottery. Few improvements are coming soon as the team is largely salary capped-out for the foreseeable future. (That Tyler Johnson-to-Phoenix deal came at the trade deadline.)
Off the court, however, the Heat is doing just fine. Business is booming. Revenues are in the "billions" with a B. Three Comma Club.
According to the new Forbes NBA valuations released last week, the Heat is the tenth-most valuable team in the league, clocking in at a cool $1.7 billion buckaroos. For perspective, that's just below the Los Angeles Clippers and just above the Toronto Raptors, who have been atop the NBA East for most of this season. Blowing the field away in the top spot were the New York Knicks, valued by Forbes at a ridiculous $4 billion-plus.
Forbes breaks the Heat's value down thusly (in millions): $741 for the sport, $521 for the market, $301 for the stadium, and $186 for the brand. The $1.7 billion was a 3 percent increase from last year's value or $50 million for those counting at home.
The Heat didn't see too much of a fluctuation following LeBron James' departure in 2014. The championships and fan equity were baked in, it seems. The Cleveland Cavaliers, however, don't seem to be surfing the same wave to the shore. According to Forbes, there are only five teams worth less than the Cavs, who fell from the 15th-most valuable team all the way down to 25th this year.
So, there you have it. The Miami Heat is doing just fine, thank you. Whether it loses to a very good Denver Nuggets team tonight or to the less good Dallas Mavericks Wednesday, at the end of the day the Heat is printing cash. It would be nice, though, if the team spent it on a better combination of players and on fans moving forward.