Nike is the primary NBA jersey sponsor, with the Nike Swoosh appearing on the front right shoulder of every player’s uniform.
The Jordan Brand also features its Jumpman logo on the front right shoulder of Statement jerseys, as well as the left leg of shorts for all jerseys.
For the 2017-18 season, the NBA announced that each organization could feature one sponsor on the left shoulder of player uniforms.
Who Are The Sponsors Of The 30 NBA Teams?
|Charlotte Hornets||Lending Tree|
|Chicago Bulls||Zenni Optical|
|Cleveland Cavaliers||Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company|
|Denver Nuggets||Western Union|
|Detroit Pistons||Flagstar Bank|
|Golden State Warriors||Rakuten|
|Los Angeles Clippers||Honey|
|Los Angeles Lakers||Wish|
|Miami Heat||Ultimate Kronos Group|
|New Orleans Pelicans||Ibotta|
|New York Knicks||Squarespace|
|Oklahoma City Thunder||Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores|
|Orlando Magic||Walt Disney World|
|Portland Trail Blazers||Biofreeze|
|San Antonio Spurs||Frost Bank|
|Toronto Raptors||Sun Life Financial|
Who Has Owned The License For NBA Jerseys In The Past?
Before 1984, the exclusive rights to NBA jerseys was held by Medalist Sand-Knit. Sand-Knit was eventually sold to MacGregor Sporting Goods, and thus the sponsor became MacGregor Sand-Knit from 1989 to 1990.
But this wasn’t an exclusive license. In 1989, Champion obtained a share of the rights, and after 1990 Champion held the exclusive rights for almost 7 years.
In 1997, the rights were distributed among the teams, meaning teams had a choice of who they wanted to sponsor their jerseys.
As such, some teams wore Nike jerseys, some wore jerseys made by Starter, and others by Puma, in addition to Champion.
Reebok jumped in after the new millennium, taking over for Starter and Champion. But in 2006, Adidas took over the exclusive rights and held the license for 11 years, from 2006 to 2017.
In 2017, Nike paid a whopping $1 billion for the exclusive rights, which they will hold until at least 2025.
Why Did The NBA Start Selling Jersey Sponsorships?
In 2017, the NBA announced that teams could see a spot on their jersey to a sponsor.
Fans hated this but the simple reason the NBA started doing was for money.
The NBA cited that MLS and European soccer kits had sponsors on them, and Adam Silver said that this was inevitable as an additional revenue generator.
Luckily for fans, sponsors don’t appear on the retail version of the jerseys, only on the jerseys the players wear.