Arizona’s economy stands to benefit from Suns’ NBA Finals appearance

Jul 7, 2021, 4:45 AM | Updated: 7:42 am
A Phoenix Suns fan takes a photo of the exterior NBA Finals signage before Game One of the NBA Fina...
A Phoenix Suns fan takes a photo of the exterior NBA Finals signage before Game One of the NBA Finals between the Milwaukee Bucks and the Phoenix Suns at Phoenix Suns Arena on July 06, 2021 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

PHOENIX — Arizona is about to get a huge economic boost thanks to the Phoenix Suns making it to the NBA Finals, according to two Valley economists.

Phoenix-based economist Elliott Pollack projects the state will get tens of millions of dollars that fans locally and out-of-state will spend at restaurants, bars and hotels in downtown Phoenix.

But he believes the biggest benefit to the state’s economy will come from the exposure and publicity the Suns’ NBA Finals appearance will bring.

“People tend to pick up things from watching TV,” Pollack said. “They like the area. They like what they see. They like what they hear and so if they’re looking to move … that might be the tipping point to come to Phoenix. If you’re a business, it could be the same thing.”

Dennis Hoffman, a professor of economics at Arizona State University, agreed and added it also brings in more tourism.

“People learn and think about places where they might want to do business or places where they might want to live or visit by experiencing events like the NBA Finals,” he said.

Hoffman added that the NBA Finals isn’t like other major sporting events, like the Super Bowl. He explained it doesn’t attract the same amount of fans from outside the state, and the spending by fans isn’t as large.

Nonetheless, he thinks it’s “an important catalyst” that brings exposure to Arizona.

“And given the international participation of players in the NBA now, this is an exposure that cascades across the planet, actually,” Hoffman said.

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Arizona’s economy stands to benefit from Suns’ NBA Finals appearance