The Golden State Warriors began their existence at the same time the Basketball Association of America — one of two leagues that merged in 1949 to form the league now known as the NBA — in 1946. The BAA's mission was to create a pro basketball league that catered to major cities and played in large arenas, the same arenas many of the BAA's owners leased for their professional hockey clubs.
The Warriors were no exception. Original owners Peter Tyrrell and Steven Kim were also co-owners of the American Hockey League's Philadelphia Rockets, who played home games at Philadelphia Arena. Tyrrell had an even more vested interest as general manager of the arena from 1934-58.
In 1952, Eddie Gottlieb — also the team's first coach — bought the team from Tyrrell and Kim for $25,000. He remained as coach until 1955 and named himself general manager, a position he held through 1963.
In 1962, Gottlieb sold the franchise to a group headed by Franklin Mieuli and backed by Diners Club, getting a sale price of $850,000. One of the conditions of the sale was that the team moved to San Francisco. The other was that Gottlieb remained as general manager.
Mieuli bought out most of the other members of the investment group in 1965. The was during his tenure the team settled across the bay in Oakland, changing the franchise name to the Golden State Warriors for the 1971-72 season.
The original plan was to become a regional team (a popular idea in the late 1960s and early 1970s) and play several "home" games in San Diego. When attendance in San Diego was minuscule, Mieuli abandoned the plan but retained the new name.
Mieuli sold the club to former Milwaukee Bucks owners Jim Fitzgerald and Dan Finnane in 1986. In 1994, the team was sold to Chris Cohan for $130 million. It was sold in July 2010 to current owners Peter Guber and Joe Lacob for a then-record $450 million
Today, Lacob has a net worth of $1.8 billion, according to Forbes, while Guber's fortune is estimated at $800 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth. Guber has been the chairman and CEO of Mandalay Entertainment Group since 1995, while Lacob was a minority shareholder in the Boston Celtics before divesting to make the bid on the Warriors.
As of October 2022, Forbes placed the valuation of the franchise at $7 billion, ranking No. 1 among NBC teams.
The Warriors have won seven BAA/NBA championships, with the first coming in the BAA's inaugural 1946-47 campaign. The club also won a title under Gottlieb's ownership in 1955-56 and one with Mieuli in the owner's suite in 1974-75.
Lacob and Guber have overseen four championships since 2014-15, with the most recent coming in 2021-22. Mieuli's teams reached the playoffs nine times, as have the Lacob/Guber era clubs.
The Cohan era was the least successful time in the team's history, with a 477-803 record and one playoff appearance in 16 seasons. The Warriors have a record of 630-393 under Lacob and Guber.