Forbes: Bucks are the least valuable team in the NBA

No, the Bucks don't have much value. But they do have Giannis. So there's that. (Photo by Ron Turenne/NBAE via Getty Images)
No, the Bucks don’t have much value. But they do have Giannis. So there’s that. (Photo by Ron Turenne/NBAE via Getty Images)

Forbes has released its valuations of every NBA team and, prepare to not be surprised if you read the headline or are generally aware of the place of the Milwaukee Bucks  in the ecosphere of the NBA, the Bucks are the least valuable team in the league at $405 million.

In its writeup of the Bucks, Forbes focused on the arena issues that hang over the franchise and have for some years:

The 26-year-old BMO Harris Bradley Center is one of the NBA’s oldest arenas and owner Herb Kohl wants it replaced. The venue recently got $3 million in upgrades to luxury suites and theater boxes, but it is not enough to keep up with the newer venues around the NBA. The team’s current lease at the Bradley Center runs until 2017 and shares only a limited portion of suite, merchandise and concession revenues with the Bucks.

This is all no surprise. The Bucks are annually the least valuable team. The biggest takeaway on this list is that the Bucks are actually becoming a viable business these days.

Forbes put Milwaukee’s operating revenue at $11 million, thanks to significant revenue sharing and a more owner friendly CBA that was negotiated in 2012 tilting the scales more in the favor of a team like Milwaukee. In 2012’s valuation, Milwaukee lost $7.6 million, while it lost $.5 million in 2013’s valuation. This is actually the first time since 2009 Milwaukee had a positive operating income according to Forbes.

Year Operating Income (in millions)
2009 5.4
2010 -7.4
2011 -2.0
2012 -7.6
2013 -0.5
2014 11.5

So the Bucks are finally making some money, despite what is surely a minuscule TV contract when compared to the likes of the Knicks and Lakers. An the valuation has climbed significantly over the past three years, shooting from $268 million in 2012 to this year’s $405 million. A new arena would likely be quite a boon. Forbes lists the BMOH Bradley Center as worth just $45 million.

For comparisons sake, the New Orleans Pelicans and Charlotte Bobcats, teams 28 and 29 on the list, have arenas valued at $76 and $79 million respectively.

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