Forced Sale of Team Likely To Attract Number of Bidders
The NBA is going to force a sale of the Los Angeles Clippers due to recent remarks by the team's disgraced owner, Donald Sterling.
Fortunately for Donald Sterling and unfortunately for all of the many millions of people who despise Sterling, the sale of the Clippers franchise is likely to fetch over a billion dollars, despite the fact that Forbes currently values the team at roughly $600 million.
There are a number of reasons why the Clippers will likely sell for so much - some of it has to do with the "hotness" of the Clippers story, while some of it has to do with the current strength of the NBA's core business.
Here are some of the reasons why the Los Angeles Clippers will likely fetch so much money:
1) The story is still "hot" and many big names names are reportedly interested in buying the team. Oprah Winfrey. Larry Ellison. Magic Johnson. Floyd Mayweather. These are just some of the names who are reportedly interested in putting together bids for the Los Angeles Clippers. In fact, any bidding process is likely to include 10+ interested bidders. That translates to one thing - $$$.
2) The Donald Sterling discount. If you had asked people who the worst owner in sports was PRIOR to the Sterling/Magic Johnson incident, many would have said Donald Sterling. The Clippers had a value of $575 million in the hands of Sterling, but in the hands of another owner? Many people feel that the team would be worth much more. Popular teams in major media markets (Los Angeles) don't grow on trees.
3) The upswing of the Clippers. If you buy the Clippers franchise, you buy a franchise that is clearly on the upswing right now thanks to players such as Chris Paul and Blake Griffin.
4) The downswing of the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers are currently on the downswing and Kobe Bryant is set to retire in a couple of years. The Clippers will continue to take fan market share in a basketball crazy Los Angeles market - that much is a certainty.
5) Local TV deal. The Clippers' local TV deal is set to expire in a couple of years. The Los Angeles Lakers recently signed a massive local TV contract that increased the value of their team by hundreds of millions of dollars overnight - there is no reason to expect that the Clippers will not get a similar deal.
6) NBA National Rights Deal. The NBA's national TV rights are set to expire in a couple of years. Given what we know about the value of sports programming in this day and age, there is no reason to think that the NBA won't get a significant premium in their next deal, especially given the new leadership of Commissioner Adam Silver, who was instrumental in inking past deals. Silver knows TV deals and he is sure to secure a great deal for his league.
For these six reasons, the Los Angeles Clippers will likely sell for in excess of $1 billion.