Sacramento Kings

Kings are the 13th-most valuable NBA franchise, according to Forbes analysis

De'Aaron Fox's dunk gives the Kings their first win at Miami since 2001

Sacramento Kings rookie De’Aaron Fox’s putback dunk with 3.3 seconds to play was the game-winner against Miami Heat Thursday, January 25 at AmericanAirlines Arena.
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Sacramento Kings rookie De’Aaron Fox’s putback dunk with 3.3 seconds to play was the game-winner against Miami Heat Thursday, January 25 at AmericanAirlines Arena.

A Forbes study released Tuesday says the Kings are worth more than all but 12 other NBA teams.

The Kings were valued at $1.375 billion during the 2016-17 season, up $450 million from just two years ago with 41 percent more annual revenue. All teams were worth at least $1 billion for the first time since Forbes began its annual rankings, though the New Orleans Pelicans just barely reached that bar. The Golden State Warriors were the third-ranked team, valued at $3.1 billion.

Much of the Kings’ economic success is tied to Golden 1 Center, Forbes editor Kurt Badenhausen wrote, including high-profile concerts that often sell better than Kings games.

Badenhausen looked at teams’ revenues, league revenue sharing and arena debt services for the 2016-17 season. The analysis also included estimated values for new arenas, media deals and sponsorships scheduled to commence following the 2016-17 season.

Sacramento finished 15th in last year’s rankings and 18th on the 2016 list, further indication that a team’s on-court successes or failures don’t necessarily translate to financial strength.

The Atlanta Hawks finished with the fifth-best record in the Eastern Conference last year at 34-22, but ranked 27th in net worth in the study. Meanwhile, the New York Knicks held down the top spot on Forbes’ list despite their fourth consecutive sub-.500 season.

Small-market teams like the Kings are creeping up on the big ballers, though. The Indiana Pacers, Memphis Grizzlies, Charlotte Hornets, San Antonio Spurs, New Orleans Pelicans, Utah Jazz, Milwaukee Bucks, Minnesota Timberwolves and Orlando Magic were all worth at least 30 percent more than they were in the 2015-16 season, while the only teams to increase by less than 10 percent were based in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles.

Benjy Egel: 916-321-1052, @BenjyEgel

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