Midterm Essay – The NBA Owner’s Dilemma

In the first four weeks, we’ve examined several issues that illustrate how the worlds of economics and sport affect each other. We’ve looked at how competition on the field relates to economic success or difficulty off the field. We’ve looked at how some teams and leagues approach issues such as revenue sharing and maintaining the competitive balance on the field

We’ve even been looking at some of the legal issues involving sport. And please recall that we began with a review of the “economist’s toolkit.” With all that in mind, please approach the following problem: You are the owner of an NBA team that is on the “bubble” for grabbing the last playoff spot. The season has ten games left. For ECONOMIC REASONS, do you push to get that last spot or do you order the coach to “play the rookies and tank the season.”? In two to three pages of a well-reasoned essay, identify your choice of action and tell us why you choose that action. Remember factors like your league’s revenue sharing policy, the fact that your league has a reverse order draft, a salary cap, etc. Consider an economist’s view of probabilities and risk. You’re writing as an owner not a fan.

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