The NBA Lays Off

In anticipation of lower ticket sales, the NBA has announced that it is laying off 9% of it’s workforce.

Nine percent is such an exact number (“about 80 jobs”), it seems odd, but what’s more interesting is that the NBA is supposedly laying off people before they even know sales will be down. Businesses that lay people off as soon as they experience a bad quarter are poorly run ( and I know that includes a big chunk of the Fortune 500), but businesses that are run so poorly they have to lay off before they hit a financial bump?

It means either the NBA is run so poorly that they are nervous about folding in the face of any financial hardship and have no cash reserves OR…the NBA hasn’t been doing financially well for a while. I’m going to take a stab in the dark and say that over the past fifteen years, the NBA has stocked their rosters with early entries and high school players, suffering worse and worse ratings, declining revenues and now…one the eve of the possibility of lower ticket sales (which doesn’t include, ahem…the tv deal, which is the big revenue generator)…they are running to cut expenses.

I think the NBA is in trouble. It might be time for them to think about deeper changes than just having the players wear suits on the bench.

3 Responses to The NBA Lays Off

  1. Jason Peck says:

    Yeah, pretty interesting they’re doing this in anticipation. What deeper changes would you suggest for the NBA?

  2. Marcus says:

    I could write an entire series on what changes could be made to really grow the NBA market (and Mark Cuban has written a lot about just that).

    In a nutshell, if I had complete control of the NBA (in a dream world), I’d shorten the season to 42 games, thus making each game actually matter, lower injuries and increase attendance.

    Then I’d do more than just push money towards the NBDL, I’d develop it into a real alternative for high school player who aren’t interested in going to college. If you play college ball, it’s a minimum of three years. Those two things will improve the brand recognition and quality of play of incoming players.

    I’d get a TV deal for the NBDL…of course nobody is going to want to pay pro league dollars for the NBDL ad rights, but if the Charlotte Bobcats, Arena Football and MLS can get local TV markets, I think the NBDL can at least get two games a week on somewhere to start. I think the NBA can use the NBDL to devlop not only talent but name brand players.

  3. Jason Peck says:

    Great point about the NBDL – they definitely should invest more in this, in my opinion.

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