The latest Forbes NBA valuations show how much winning can pay off

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Toronto Raptors guard Kyle Lowry kisses the trophy after the Toronto Raptors beat the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals, Game 6 at Oracle Arena, June 13, 2019.

Rick Madonik | Toronto Star | Getty Images

Winning may be the best way to boost an NBA team’s value, according to Forbes’ franchise valuations, but nothing beats the shine of a major market.

The Toronto Raptors, last season’s champions, saw the biggest boost in their value, according to Forbes, which released valuations for each NBA team on Tuesday. The Raptors are now worth $2.1 billion in the latest Forbes valuations, a 25% increase over last year’s figure.

The Golden State Warriors, which lost to the Raptors in the NBA Finals, saw the next-highest growth, Forbes reported. The team’s value increased by 23% to $4.3 billion over last season.

Teams from major markets dominated the top spots in the Forbes rankings, showing several examples of how winning isn’t everything when it comes to the valuations.

The New York Knicks, the team with the worst record in the NBA last season, took the number one spot in the Forbes list for the fifth year in a row with a value of $4.6 billion, a 15% jump from last year.

For the past five years, the Knicks have finished in the bottom half of their conference, according to Basketball Reference. The Knicks are currently 17-37 and are third from last in the Eastern Conference.

Following the Knicks in the value rankings were the Los Angeles Lakers ($4.4 billion), the Golden State Warriors ($4.3 billion), the Chicago Bulls ($3.2 billion) and the Boston Celtics ($3.1 billion), according to Forbes.

For the first time, the average National Basketball Association team is worth more than $2 billion, a 14% increase from last year, Forbes reported. Out of the four major men’s sports leagues in the U.S., the NBA saw the biggest increase in average franchise value.

Check out the full list of rankings in Forbes’ report.

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