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Volume 25 No. 7
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Data From Wasserman Shows NBA Jersey Patch Deals Averaging Just Over $9M Annually

More than half of the NBA's 30 teams have signed jersey patch deals "for an average" of $9.3M annually, according to a source cited by Lombardo & Lefton in this week's SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL. The average patch deal value compiled by Wasserman, which did deal evaluations for 15 NBA teams, including the Warriors' record $20M yearly deal with Japanese tech company Rakuten, is "in line" with the $9M average initially forecasted by the agency. Wasserman Managing Partner Elizabeth Lindsey said, "It has been trending slightly up from projections." But Lombardo & Lefton note selling the high-priced inventory has proved "no easy task given it had never been done in any of the four top U.S. stick and ball leagues." That "unfamiliarity, along with the deeply integrated and high valuations of the deals, is why the league gave teams an 18-month runway to sell the patches." Big-market teams without jersey patch deals last week included the Bulls, Clippers and Rockets, as those teams "continued to look for the right partner -- and right price." Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment CEO Brett Yormark said, "It's a different kind of sale; the narrative is different, the approach has to be different." He added, "This isn't just a signage, branding or exposure story. It has to be a bigger play." Lombardo & Lefton note the league "expects to have about two-thirds of NBA teams with deals in place this season" (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 10/16 issue).

STILL AVAILABLE: In Dallas, Brad Townsend notes when the Mavericks open their season tonight, they will "not be one of those teams -- at least not yet" -- with a jersey patch. Mavs Owner Mark Cuban said last week that the franchise "wasn't close to completing a sponsorship deal." Mavs Exec VP George Killebrew said that Cuban himself is "handling the negotiations and is talking with 'several' interested companies" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 10/18).

WISHES DO COME TRUE: The Lakers this season will wear a jersey patch that reads "Wish," and in California, Jeff Miller notes players last month were "briefed on the deal and other specifics." Lakers F Larry Nance Jr. said, "They wanted us to know what to say if we were asked about it. I had heard of it, but I wasn't too familiar with it. They didn't want us saying, 'I don't know what it is? They paid us money, I guess." Miller notes most Lakers players "had no clue" that Wish is a S.F.-based mobile shopping platform that "features cut-rate prices on pretty much everything." Nance: "As long as we don't become soccer teams or NASCAR drivers where you can't actually see the name of the team anymore. ... But just a little patch? I think it's awesome" (ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, 10/18).

NBA JERSEY PATCHES FOR '17-18 SEASON
TEAM
SPONSOR
76ers
StubHub
Bucks
Harley-Davidson
Cavaliers
Goodyear
Celtics
GE
Hawks
Sharecare
Heat
Ultimate Software
Jazz
Qualtrics
Kings
Blue Diamond
Knicks
Squarespace
Lakers
Wish
Magic
Walt Disney World
Nets
Infor
Nuggets
Western Union
Pistons
Flagstar Bank
Raptors
Sun Life
T'Wolves
Fitbit
Warriors
Rakuten