Former ABA owners are still making money off NBA TV contracts

The NBA is negotiating with Ozzie and Daniel Silna, attempting to end their contract that gives them a piece of the NBA's television rights in perpetuity.

If you're unfamiliar with the story of the Silna brothers, they were formerly the owners of the Spirits of St Louis of the ABA. When the ABA dissolved and the teams were folded into the NBA, the Silnas received a 1/7 share of the NBA's TV revenue from the four ABA teams that were absorbed – the Spurs, Nets, Nuggets, and Pacers. So essentially, these two men that have nothing to do with the league have been raking in free money since 1976 – over $300 million to date.

Last year, the brothers reportedly received $19 million from their share. With the NBA's TV contracts going up for bids in the next year or so, the Silnas can once again cash in – and the NBA obviously doesn't want that. The roughly $930 million made each year by the NBA will increase in their next TV deal, and the Silnas are poised to keep cashing in. If the NBA doubles their take like MLB did last fall, the Silnas are in line to make nearly $40 million per season.

[ESPN]

Joe Lucia

About Joe Lucia

Joe is the managing editor of The Outside Corner and an associate editor at Awful Announcing. He lives in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and is smack dab in the middle of some of the best (and worst) sports fans in the country.

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