USA Today reports: The hunger for new revenue during the economic downturn has the NBA and NHL entertaining the once-taboo prospect of corporate sponsorships for game uniforms. Beginning this season the NBA will let teams sell ads on their practice jerseys, says deputy commissioner Adam Silver, who adds the league is continuing to explore the issue of ads on game jerseys. “We are operating a diverse business all around the world,” Silver says. “(The sponsored game jersey) is a well-established practice in other countries. Ultimately, I think our fans will come to accept it.” … The NBA is in the process of developing its guidelines, says NBA spokesman Mike Bass. WNBA teams were allowed to sell ads on game jerseys this season and two teams took advantage. The WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury and Los Angeles Sparks featured LifeLock and Farmer’s Insurance, respectively, prominently featured on the front.
InsideHoops.com editor says: Who actually sees practice jerseys, other than the players and team employees? I assume this is a stepping stone to selling ads on regular game jerseys. Considering that the WNBA started doing this, it’s not surprising that the NBA is allowing it. And if it’s OK for the world’s most popular sport (soccer) to do it, it might as well be OK for NBA basketball teams, especially considering the struggling economy and lower ad spending.