Sunday, January 19, 2014

NBA Deal Will Save Pacers Millions But Don't Expect Indianapolis Taxpayers To Get A Break

A new collective bargaining agreement in the NBA more than two years ago shifted at least $200 million to the pockets of the NBA franchise owners, a move that netted millions annually in savings to the billionaire owner of the Pacers, Herb Simon. Despite that windfall, Simon continues to receive $10 million annual subsidies courtesy of the Capital Improvement Board. Now comes word that a new NBA deal that is expected to save the Pacers about $5 million as revenues from ticket sales climb during the franchise's most successful season in many years. Nonetheless, don't expect the greedy billionaire to show any charity when it comes to Indianapolis taxpayers, who have subsidized his business endeavors to the tune of more than $250 million over the years.

The latest deal stems from a 1976 agreement the NBA made with the owners of the St. Louis ABA franchise when it absorbed other ABA teams but cut the St. Louis franchise out of the merger. The teams absorbed by the NBA were required to indefinitely share one-seventh of their national television revenue according to the IBJ. In 2011, the former owners of the St. Louis franchise took the NBA to court seeking a larger share of the television revenues. According to the IBJ, the Pacers' share of payments to the St. Louis owners, Ozzie and Daniel Silna, amounted to approximately $5 million a year. An upfront payment of about $500 million may be part of a settlement agreement between the NBA and the Silna brothers to extricate the other former ABA teams from the revenue sharing agreement. The IBJ expects the deal to save the Pacers millions in annual payments.

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