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Volume 24 No. 156
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Nike Making Changes To NBA Jerseys In Wake Of Numerous In-Game Tears

Nike has "acknowledged it will make substantive changes" to its new NBA jerseys after at least five players have had their uniforms rip during games this season, according to Darren Rovell of ESPN.com. The company said the "initial product presented to teams needs more reinforcement." Nike "did not reveal how many jerseys, if any, will be discarded in the process." When the jerseys ripped, they "didn't just tear, they fell apart on the biggest of stars and in ways that made video of the moments spread quickly on social media." The list of players who have had their jerseys ripped includes Cavaliers Fs LeBron James and Kevin Love, Warriors F Draymond Green and 76ers F Ben Simmons. Players have "dealt with torn jerseys in the past, but not with this frequency." Despite the "embarrassment" for Nike, there have been "no known complaints from consumers about the jerseys they've purchased" (ESPN.com, 11/7). CBSSPORTS.com's Chris Barnewall notes these jersey rips "aren't really a huge deal in terms of basketball." It is "more of an inconvenience than anything else, but it can't be good marketing for Nike to have their jerseys being ripped on TV every other week" (CBSSPORTS.com, 11/7). ESPN’s Tony Reali said of the new uniforms, “The NBA: where jerseys fall off people at an alarming rate and they don't absorb sweat at all anymore” (“Around the Horn,” ESPN, 11/6). ESPN’s Zubin Mehenti said, “Those Nike jerseys -- just not as durable as we’d like, right? LeBron’s (jersey) split right in half” (“SportsCenter,” ESPN, 11/5).