The NBA Bubble Will Be Super Expensive

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One sentiment that I keep seeing a variation of on Twitter is that the NBA is forging ahead with their plans to finish the season out of greed, and that everything they say otherwise is just PR. As we saw MLB owners scratch and claw and run out the clock so there would be less games this season, I’m not so sure the NBA owners get a massive financial windfall out of resuming the season.

Speaking on The Jump earlier this week, Brian Windhorst said that the bubble will cost the NBA over $150 million, or $1.5 million per day:

The costs associated with this will be crazy. You have to buy up the hotel rooms. And then there is all the money that will be spent on testing, medical specialists, food, various other amenities, and security.

You add this on top of paying the players, and then remember that they are losing arena gates in the form of ticket sales, food, beer, and merchandise. There’s actually a shot that some franchises lose money on the balance of the season resumption.

However, you can make the argument that preserving the season prevents the “force majeure” cancellation of TV deals and/or the collective bargaining agreement (which could lead to further work stoppage). There’s also the case that, by toughing it out, the NBA proves to broadcast partners that they are resilient and thus deserving of greater future rights deals.


Written by Ryan Glasspiegel

Ryan Glasspiegel grew up in Connecticut, graduated from University of Wisconsin-Madison, and lives in Chicago. Before OutKick, he wrote for Sports Illustrated and The Big Lead. He enjoys expensive bourbon and cheap beer.

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