Proving that nothing in New York is cheap, a recent study by Sportsbusinessnews.com confirmed that the New York Knickerbockers were officially the worst bargain in the league this season. When you divide the Knicks $94,395,091 payroll (highest in the league) by 39, the number of W’s they notched this season, the results show that each victory cost owner James Dolan $2,420,387.

act_anfernee_hardaway.jpg Need proof that shrewd cap mangement can put you in position to win a title? 2003 champs the San Antonio Spurs finished at the opposite end of the list with each of their 57 wins costing a mere $833,469. Three other teams, the Denver Nuggets, the Utah Jazz and the Indiana Pacers finished the year with a Cost Per Win ratio under $1,000,000 per.

Taking a look at the same ratio on an individual player basis yields more bad news for the Knicks. Using a formula that basically amounts to a player’s on court production divided by his salary, it’s clear the Knicks aren’t getting their money’s worth with four players in the Top 30 of the so-called “Bust For Buck” index. Penny Hardaway came in third, followed by Allan Houston at 26th and Othella Harrington at 27th, while Shandon Anderson rounded out the Top 30. Tom Gugliotta and former Knick Antonio McDyess (who was shipped out of town in the trade that brought Hardaway to Gotham) finished at the top of the “Bust For Buck” index, but both missed a majority of the season with injuries, leaving Penny in the top spot for players that actually saw the court on a regular basis.

In all fairness, Gothamist should point out that late season acquisition Vin Baker finished third on the “Bang For Buck” index, but that was using the $200k the Knicks paid him and did not include the roughly $8 million he was paid by the Boston Celtics.

This is shaping up to be a summer to forget at the Garden since Isiah Thomas shipped out this summer’s first round draft pick in the Stephon Marbury trade. Former GM Scott Layden used the teams Mid-Level Exception last summer to sign Dikembe Mutombo (which means, since they are over the salary cap, they can’t use the MLE again until next year), so unless Isiah can find a trading partner this summer to take Mutombo, Anderson or Moochie Norris off his hands, this Knicks roster will be the same one you are paying to see in the Garden every night.

And speaking of paying to see the Knicks, two weeks after being swept out of the playoffs by New Jersey, Dolan raised ticket prices for the first time in two years. The New York Post reports that in many of the 200-level sections, prices went up 20 percent. Season tickets priced $67 last season are up to $80. The 200-level sections toward midcourt are rising from $79 to $95. Club-level sections (44 to 61 and 73 to 90) by the court are up from $210 to $240.

In New York City, even mediocrity is expensive.