Business Week put together a list of sports' smartest spenders, a list on which our beloved Chicago Bulls place 38th out of 122. That is good for 10th best in the NBA. I'll defer to Comcast SportsNet's Mark Strotman on the specifics: "the rankings calculated how much each team spent on payroll per win over the last five seasons. Added bonuses were given for "victories that matter most: wins above .500, playoff wins, and championships."
Well then. If you've been keeping up with our Bulls coverage throughout this offseason, the following facts won't come as much of a surprise: a Forbes study found the Bulls be to the most profitable franchise in the NBA by a significant margin over the last five years; during the 2010-2011 season, Chicago's operating revenue of $59.4 million ranked only behind the New York Knicks. Maybe the Forbes report isn't gospel, but the Bulls surely massage their own numbers for tax reasons, as @BullsBlogger once pointed out.
As Mark Deeks has uncovered, the Bulls are one of seven franchises never to pay the luxury tax. They are a big market team, a wildly lucrative organization. They have been good, thanks mostly to lucking into the rights to Derrick Rose and the bargain basement price the NBA's rookie scale paid him for his first four years of wonderful service.
You spend to stay good. The Bobcats might have excuses, the Bulls do not. And yes, Chicago is slated to pay the luxury tax this year. Remember: that's not assessed until after the season ends, so it's very likely the Bulls will do everything in their power to ditch Rip Hamilton to avoid incurring the fine.
Are the Bulls one of the NBA's smartest spending teams? In a vacuum, maybe, but only because they're deathly cheap.