By The Numbers: The Economics Of The NBA Finals

This year’s NBA Finals boast a larger prize pool than ever before, giving both the San Antonio Spurs and the Miami Heat extra incentive to fight for the championship title. In economic terms, however, the postseason buzz doesn’t only benefit the winners. Here’s a by-the-numbers breakdown of this year’s prizes, ticket prices, economic impacts and more.

Winners and losers
$4,104,811 is the total a winning Spurs team will be awarded
$3,631,684 is the total a winning Heat team will be awarded
$3,268,347 is how much the Spurs are guaranteed to make, win or lose
$2,795,220 is how much the Heat are guaranteed to make, win or lose

Prize money breakdown
$14 million is the total value of the NBA Playoffs prize pool
$2.3 million goes to the NBA championship team, plus the trophy and rings
$1.5 million goes to the Finals runner-up
$150,000-200,000 is the approximate value of each championship ring the Dallas Mavericks were awarded in 2011

Regular season and playoffs bonuses
$381,482 for reaching the conference finals
$374,947 for having the best record in the NBA during the regular season
$328,078 each to the two teams with the best record in their conference
$230,853 for reaching the conference semifinals
$194,016 for being in the first round of the playoffs

Ticket prices
$57,000 is how much a suite costs at the American Airlines Arena in Miami
$16,300-20,000 is the average price of a front-row seat during the Spurs-Heat Finals, according to online ticket price aggregator
$927 is the average price for ticket to a Finals game taking place in Miami
$865 is the average price for an NBA Finals ticket
$474 is the average price for a ticket to a potential Game 7 in San Antonio
$300 is the approximate price of a low-end ticket in the NBA Finals

Media, advertising and licensing profits
$930 million, on average, is paid annually to the NBA by ESPN and TNT to air basketball programming, according to the nine-year media rights deal it signed with the broadcasters
$536.9 million is how money is spent on NBA postseason advertising, according to a 2013 Kantar Media report
$60 million, at least, is how much free national and international publicity a host region gets during the NBA Finals
$460,000 is how much a 30-second TV spot on ABC cost during last year’s NBA Finals
5-10 per cent of profits from “three-peat” merchandise will go to Pat Riley by way of licensing and royalty fees for his trademark, according to the Wall Street Journal

Profits in city limits
$1.5 billion is the Miami Heat’s arena’s total economic impact on Miami-Dade county, according to a team-commissioned study
$90 million, approximately, is the profit surplus the Miami Heat generated in their last three years of playoffs runs
$15 million is how much economic activity was generated in Miami-Dade county during the 2013 NBA Finals
$6.4 million in taxes are given annually to the Miami Heat’s American Airline Arena by Miami-Dade county, according to the Miami Herald
$257,134.12 is how much Miami-Dade county received back from the Miami Heat in 2013, the first time ever since they struck a profit-share deal 14 years ago
$20 million is how much the City of San Antonio pocketed during their team’s 2013 Finals run
$3-4 million a night is how much the Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce estimates hotels, restaurants and bars will make during each home Finals game this year
20 per cent is how much downtown San Antonio hotel bookings have gone up since the Spurs made the finals last year, according to WFAA Channel 8

Team values
$770 million is what Forbes calculates the Miami Heat’s team value to be
$660 million is what Forbes calculates the San Antonio Spurs’ team value to be
37 per cent is how much the Miami Heat team’s value increased after they won their first championship in 2012, according to Forbes
30 per cent is the average gain in value for recent NBA champions


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