Utah Jazz: Playoff payoff? Each home game has big impact on Jazz bottom line
Several months later, Rigby said the Jazz won't have any extra revenue. It's worth noting, however, the Jazz's claimed losses do not include any revenue from concessions at EnergySolutions Arena, which Miller owns. That likely accounts for a good chunk of the difference between Utah's loss claim and Forbes' report that shows revenue gains.
Rigby agreed that the playoffs are valuable and not just for financial reasons.
"Sports is all about hope, about breeding hope to a community. The excitement and hope (during the playoffs) has a big impact on ticket holders, sponsors and the future years for them wanting to be involved with you," Rigby said. "The community has been great about rallying around (the Jazz)."
For years, it's been rumored that NBA teams pocket about $1 million for each home playoff game. But that figure, Rigby said, is high. For one thing, the NBA takes a 45-percent cut of each home gate during the playoffs (up from just 6 percent per home game during the regular season) to cover its annual expenses.
If a playoff series goes an odd number of games, the visiting team also gets 25 percent of ticket sales from the final game on top of that.
"We share a big part of our gate," Rigby said. "That impacts us."
Franchises also don't get as big of a chunk from TV revenues because of national production and broadcasts. Players and some personnel also receive per-round bonuses for playoff success.
Even with the financial losses not to mention attractive purchasing offers, which Miller has received don't count on the Jazz beelining for Oklahoma City or anywhere else. For one thing, Miller loves having an NBA franchise in Salt Lake City for himself and his neighbors in the Intermountain West. That means the Jazz aren't going anywhere.
"Larry has shown his colors on this. Larry is very committed to this community," Rigby said. "We feel that the Jazz is an important part of enhancing the quality of life in this community, of giving a great product that the community can get around and cheer for. It becomes a diversion for people and their personal challenges."
The Jazz owner also has so much invested in the area in other business projects from movie theaters, sports merchandise shops, a motorsports mecca, a minor-league baseball club, to multiple automobile dealerships that bolting is far from his mind.
So even if the Jazz happen to lose money something they didn't always do back in the John Stockton and Karl Malone days that huge brand name is an invaluable resource for the rest of Miller's ventures.
Rigby, who is also the president of Miller's Sports Entertainment Group that oversees entities like the Jazz, the Salt Lake Bees, the multiple movie theaters, EnergySolutions Arena and broadcasting properties, admitted the basketball franchise is good for marketing and for goodwill purposes.
"It does give credibility to our company and organizations," Rigby said. "It gives name awareness to Larry's other entities."That's especially the case, it stands to reason, when the Jazz are winning in the playoffs.
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