Soon the NBA will have a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA). Of course "soon" is a relative term and hopefully in this case it will be well before games and/or the season is canceled.
With the owners looking to put in a hard(er) cap while locking in a bigger piece of the pie at the players' expense, which teams are best situated for the new NBA economy?
The short answer, if the league gets its way, is "All of them."The HavesA hard cap is going to stunt the development of teams like the Bulls and Knicks. Just think about the Heat though. They have a weak bench and a hard cap would prevent them from signing anybody. Bosh would be on the chopping block the next day.The Lakers, the New York Knicks, Chicago Bulls are three of the top tickets in the NBA, by revenue. Whatever the rules, those are the teams with the capital.
A hard cap would make it harder for L.A. to keep its core together. It might make it extremely difficult for the Knicks to add a third star to play with Amar'e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony. The Bulls need to give Derrick Rose a new contract after next season, which may take away the necessary flexibility to add to the team.
Any number of teams in recent years have spent big, big money to chase a title. It paid off in 2008 for the Boston Celtics but hasn't since despite their 2010 return to the NBA Finals in a losing effort.The Orlando MagicThe Dallas MavericksOther examples of big spenders would include the Denver Nuggets, San Antonio Spurs and, to a lesser extreme, the HawksThere is a new Buss in town and he looks to be giving the team his own branded stamp. A hard cap would give the Lakers an excuse to rebuild by unloading big contracts for picks and prospects. All the big spenders seem to be more at the end of their current era lifespan so I don't think the hard cap forcing them to trim the fat is as bad as advertised. If a hard cap is implemented the league would have to phase out current contracts over time. These big spenders would have lots of time to make changes. The Raptors might actually be able to leverage a fairly one sided trade with its cap flexibility in talking with the big spenders.Each of these teams has been losing money. Be it market, not enough local television income (Boston) or just overspending, it's expensive to compete with teams like the Knicks, Bulls and Lakers without a matching level of income and a reasonable payroll.
Getting the spending reigned in across the board, ideally, will provide each of these teams a chance to compete without toiling through years in the red.
Up And Comers1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7... Where's #8? The writer implies that MLSE lost money on the Raptors. I don't buy that given good attendance, high ticket prices and the money spent on players and coaching staff.The NBA attests only eight teams profited this last year. Among those are believed to be the Knicks, Bulls, Houston Rockets, Detroit Pistons, Oklahoma City Thunder, Los Angeles Clippers and Lakers.
Transition TeamsAgreed. Eric got this right but I think they're in the wrong bucket here.For teams to bring in the revenue (and fans), generally they need to stay in the playoff hunt at or above .500.
How many teams have spent years trying to get through unfortunate contracts?
The Toronto Raptors have a solid Canadian fan-base and a low payroll ($46 million), but it's unclear exactly how this 22-60 team is going to improve.
The owners want to make it easier for teams to keep their existing stars with a soft franchise tag that wouldn't require a player like Chris Bosh to stay, but would give him greater financial incentive to stay.
Of course the Raptors need to find that franchise star. Andrea Bargnani can be a match up nightmare with his outside shot but he still hasn't developed a complete game. Jonas Valanciunas may be the sleeper pick of this last draft. Toronto management has a lot of work to do to get a competitive team together but the new CBA should put the Raptors on a more even playing field.
Teams Needing SupportSource: HoopsWorld.comThe Sacramento Kings nearly departed for Anaheim. They're losing money, don't have much on payroll, and didn't get the kind of fan support they needed.
Times were so tight for the New Orleans Hornets the franchise was sold to the NBA.
The Indiana Pacers were a playoff team this past year but they need more revenue.
What these teams really need is revenue sharing. Most of the league could use it for that matter. The Lakers and other big markets would obviously oppose it in full force but on the flip side those big market teams wouldn't be in a position to make those dollars if not for the little to mid market teams helping in drawing interest to the game. The big difference between revenue generation in L.A. or Chicago compared to Oklahoma City and New Orleans is population size and city wealth. The Lakers benefit greatly from the sheer size of the population and the stature of the community. They're not doing anything special. Play musical chairs and send the Thunder to L.A. and the Lakers to Oklahoma City and suddenly the Thunder are swimming in a pool of gold like Scrooge McDuck. I think it's time for the big markets to pay the "tax" of operating in a highly favorable location. Here's a thought, maybe the Raptors get more air time States side if there isn't as much focus on kissing the feet of the big markets because all television revenue is flowing into one pot?