Mark Cuban pushing for ads on NBA jerseys
It should as no surprise that the NBA owner pushing most aggressively for advertisements on NBA jerseys is the Dallas Mavericks' megabucks owner Mark Cuban.
"I've been trying to tell (the NBA)," Cuban told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. "If someone wants to give us $10 million, I'll make it happen."
Cuban feels NBA commissioner David Stern would be receptive to the idea, and expressed this in his own uniquely Cuban-esque fashion.
"If the amount's enough, David will jump up and down," Cuban told the Star-Telegram. "He's not going to do it for $200,000 from Power Balance, but if somebody offers us $25 million, it's done."
This decision would be all about the Benjamins, and the Benjamins would indeed be significant. Of the 30 NBA teams, 22 claim to be losing money and operating at a loss. Meanwhile, a study by Horizon Media estimates that putting corporate logos on NBA jerseys would generate more than $31 billion worth of exposure each year for the featured companies.
The WNBA started placing ads on players' jerseys in 2009. Some WNBA jerseys do not even have the name of the city or the team -- just the corporate sponsor.
The discussions are still preliminary. Even if the NBA does decide to move forward with branded jerseys, this would not necessarily mean there will be Starbucks mermaids and once-bitten Apples all over each uniform. There is a possibility that the logo would be subtle, and consistent across teams.
Consider the NBA warmup suit shown at right. The shirts and pants both have a small Adidas logo branded rather inconspicuously onto them.
Considering how the WNBA uses corporate logos, though, one could fairly surmise that branded NBA jerseys would be the of the overly obnoxious variety -- like the jerseys worn by European basketball players.
If that happens, we will probably have to update our All-Time Ugliest Baketball Jerseys list.