Whenever we hear a sports owner complaining about losing money from operating a franchise, we should remind them of the most valuable sports franchises in North America to prove that they are one of the few things in this world that continues to increase in value.
Los Angeles Lakers
Once upon a time in Hollywood, one of the most storied franchises in professional sports went up for sale, and one man was dead set on purchasing them. As depicted in the HBO series Winning Time, it was apparent how much Jerry Buss wanted the Los Angeles Lakers. In the $67.5 million deal, Buss acquired the “Lake Show,” the LA Kings, The Forum arena, and a massive ranch in the Sierra Nevada.
Based on the current evaluation of the Lakers being $6.44 billion, it’s safe to say that the hefty investment was worth it. Jerry Buss passed away in 2013, but his legacy remains with the Lakers, as the 10-time NBA champion’s daughter is the team’s controlling owner.
New York Knicks
Despite James Dolan’s best efforts to sink the franchise with multiple disastrous decisions, the New York Knicks are still among the most sought-after franchises in American sports. Winning isn’t necessary when you own Madison Square Garden, which greatly contributes to Dolan and the Knicks’ $6.58 billion worth. Even with all that money, the “city that never sleeps” continues to whiff on free-agent signings.
New York Yankees
When you think of successful New York sports franchises, one is ahead of the crowd—the New York Yankees. The “Bronx Bombers” is amid a championship dry spell, but their 27 World Series championships and historical relevancy are good for a $7.01 billion evaluation.
The Yankees have a two billion dollar advantage over their rivals and second-most valuable baseball team, the Boston Red Sox, allowing them to continue to spend big money on premium talent.
Golden State Warriors
In the past decade, the pendulum has shifted in the NBA. The Lakers aren’t the big dogs in California anymore, thanks to the Golden State Warriors. Before Stephen Curry made his mark on the league and the Warriors, Golden State was a bit of a laughingstock.
They had no championships and were an afterthought compared to the Lakers, Clippers, and Kings. However, Curry’s sharpshooting, paired with Klay Thompson and Draymond Green, makes them the most valuable franchise in basketball at $7.56 billion. The most significant factor for the Warriors’ success may be the invisible hand of Silicon Valley backing them, but that’s a debate for another day.
The NFL has evolved a great deal over the decades, yet there’s one thing that’s still a constant: the Dallas Cowboys being the most valuable franchise in North American sports. At $7.64 billion, they clear the second most-valuable NFL franchise, the Los Angeles Rams, by nearly two billion dollars. Jerry Jones buying “America’s Team” for $150 million may be one of the savviest business decisions this country has ever seen.
Although the great Vince Lombardi eloquently stated, “winning isn’t everything; it’s the only thing,” that idiom doesn’t hold when it comes to the most valuable franchises in North America, particularly when you remember how much the Knicks are worth.