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Suns place 14th in Forbes’ ranking of NBA franchise value

Phoenix Suns owner Robert Sarver has not jumped at the opportunity to become roommates with the Arizona Coyotes.

Forbes Magazine released its annual ranking of the financial value of NBA franchises, with the Phoenix Suns finishing just inside the top half at 14th.

Based on 2015-16 numbers, Forbes reports the Suns value at $1.1 billion, with revenue of $173 million and operating income of $26.3 million.

The focus for the Suns is their arena situation, which as with other teams in Phoenix is a bit volatile.

Talking Stick Arena is the seventh-oldest building in the NBA and Suns owner Robert Sarver wants a new one that is paid for by taxpayers. The Suns’ arena lease expires in 15 years, but there is a clause in 2021 that allows the Suns to bring in a mediator to determine if the building is “functionally obsolete.”

Talking Stick Resort Arena opened in 1992 under the name America West Arena, replacing the Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum as the Suns’ venue. In 2006, it changed to U.S. Airways Center, then to its current name in 2015.

In April, Phoenix mayor Greg Stanton mentioned the idea of building a new downtown arena that could house the Suns, the Mercury and the Coyotes. Suns president Jason Rowley was noncommittal to the idea that the Coyotes and Suns could share a new arena on Tuesday.

The Suns dropped down a stop in Forbes’ list from last season, with the Toronto Raptors jumping from 13th to 14th. The New York Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers and Golden State Warriors rounded out the top three.

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