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Boston Celtics Going Up For Sale Just Weeks After Winning Championship


Buy low, sell high.

That seems to be the strategy at work in recent sales of NBA teams, the most recent being the storied Boston Celtics. The club’s ownership group, Boston Basketball Partners L.L.C., announced today its “intention to sell all the shares of the team.”

The sale is likely to set a record for an NBA franchise.

The announcement comes just weeks after the Celtics won a record 18th NBA Championship. It also comes just hours after the team locked in the core players who won that championship, including Jayson Taytum, who got the largest contract in league history today (a five-year, $315 million deal) and Derek White (a four-year, $125.9 million extension).

Also fortuitous: The NBA is on the cusp of what should be it’s biggest media rights deal ever, worth $76 billion. That deal is expected by many to be the peak of such agreements for the league, with subsequent deal totals declining. It is expected to be coupled with exorbitant expansion fees in coming years as the league looks to expand its number of teams. Those fees are shared among owners of existing franchises.

Case in point is the team the Celtics beat last month to win the championship. Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban — no slouch himself at the art of “buy low, sell high” — received approval in December to sell the team for about $3.5 billion. That’s a cool $3-plus billion over his purchase price and Cuban will reportedly retain 27% of the team and may well retain control of basketball operations.

According to Yahoo Sports, Cuban has expressed concern that the broadcast deal after this one (likely after 2030) could fall victim to the sports broadcast rights bubble bursting.

The record sale prince for an NBA team is the $4 billion Matt Ishbia paid in 2022 for the Phoenix Suns. While Phoenix is a hot market with and has a good roster, it doesn’t come close to the reigning champs, who have a better roster, a rabid fan base and arguably the greatest lore of any team in the league.

Boston Basketball Partners LLC said the sale is being made “for estate and family planning considerations. The managing board expects to sell a majority interest in 2024 or early 2025, with the balance closing in 2028.”

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