Trips to Walt Disney World never come cheap.
In order for the NBA to complete its season at ESPN Wide World of Sports in Orlando, the league will spend more than $150 million over three-plus months on the 22 teams taking part, according to ESPN.
“It comes into play that we feel an obligation to our sport and to the industry to find a new normal,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver told Time magazine this week. “It doesn’t come into play in terms of dollars and cents because, frankly, it’s not all that economical for us to play on this campus. It’s enormously expensive.”
In addition to taking over three hotels, the NBA has secured exclusive use of three arenas and seven practice courts at the complex. At its busiest, the league expects to house more than 1,500 people, while providing daily meals, COVID-19 testing, medical staff, transportation, security and entertainment.
According to ESPN, the league was previously projected to lose more than $1 billion due to the pandemic, before the massive expenditure to isolated players, coaches and essential staff.
By finishing the season, the NBA — which earns an average of $2.66 billion in TV deals with ESPN and TNT — will secure hundreds of millions of dollars, while players will retain more than $600 million in salary.
By having each of the teams in the restart play eight regular season games — surpassing a total of 70 games — franchises will receive unspecified millions more from regional TV deals.