Eben Novy-Williams: Here’s the new @Cavs, @Warriors, @MiamiHEAT, @Spurs socks, per @NBA deal with @Stance. Via @soshnick #SportsBiz pic.twitter.com/ZQFHKuzqbL
Jeff Zillgitt: Players will be begin wearing Stance-branded NBA socks at the draft combine and Summer League. Here’s a look: stance.com/nba
Scott Soshnick: BREAKING: @NBA signs deal with @Stance, which will put its logo on game socks. First time any company logo will appear on socks. #sportsbiz
Sources said that for the first time, the deal will include the rights to put a manufacturer’s logo on NBA jerseys. Currently, adidias’ logo only appears on NBA warm-ups. One source said that both Nike’s swoosh and its Jordan Brand Jumpman logo could appear on NBA jerseys. Those details will not be finalized for some time, the source added. NBA Exec VP/Communications Mike Bass would not comment on a possible agreement.
The new deal will take effect in time for the ’17-18 NBA season, after the rights held by 11-year incumbent uniform rights-holder adidas expire. After adidas dropped out, the NBA said it hoped to announce a new uniform deal this spring. adidas’ current agreement is valued at $400M over 11 years, and a Nike deal is certainly expected to surpass that in value.
Nike is close to securing a long-term NBA uniform rights deal. Sources said the framework for a deal has been reached, the outline of which will be presented to ownership today in N.Y. during a meeting of the Exec Committee and tomorrow before the full NBA BOG. Multiple sources said that while the two sides have an agreement in principle, they are still some distance from a signed deal. However, Nike’s new on-court rights will not begin for more than another two years. Nike and the NBA still have “a million I’s to dot and T’s to cross,” said a senior industry source, “but it’s at that stage, as opposed to getting to the right number.”
Jeff Zillgitt: Here’s some interesting news, which NBA has been pushing since 2011 CBA: NBA, NBPA to introduce HGH blood testing into anti-drug program. First violation for a positive HGH test will result in a 20-game suspension. Second violation: 40 games. Third violation: dismissal from NBA. All NBA players will be subject to three random, unannounced HGH tests annually. Players also subject to reasonable-cause testing for HGH.
Jeff Zillgitt: Another smoothing note: NBPA believes there will be plenty of money for free agents beyond summer of 2016. Shortfall after 2016-17, too.
The league, however, had little incentive to make a deal. The collective bargaining agreement that was signed in 2011 cut the players’ portion of the revenue pie from 57 percent to 51 percent. The deal has functioned extremely well for the owners, who have seen operating margins and franchise values increase significantly. Now the players are prepare for the deal to function in their favor. Silver essentially admitted over All-Star Weekend this likely would be the outcome.
Owners for decades have sold small pieces of their teams to friends and colleagues, including stakes that amount to less than 1 percent equity — and could cost in the mid- to low-six-figures, per several league sources. Those with such little equity usually don’t get any of the biggest perks of owning an NBA team. They don’t get a seat at the Board of Governors or any real say in the team’s big basketball- or business-related decisions. Some even have to scrounge for tickets if they decide at the last minute they’d like to attend a game.
The league had been contemplating the change for years, sources say. The new Bucks’ ownership group may have provided the final impetus. Marc Lasry and Wes Edens, two of the three largest stakeholders in the team, are among 37 individuals who own some portion of the Bucks, per league sources.1 Both Lasry and Edens sold small chunks of the team to friends, family members, and prominent members of the Milwaukee community — a key method of gathering support for a new arena.
Call it the Jay Z rule. At its last major meeting, the NBA’s Board of Governors quietly passed a rule mandating that teams have 25 or fewer individual owners — and that every such owner must own at least 1 percent of the team, per a half-dozen league sources. To be clear, Jay Z was not the specific target of the rule change; he owned a minuscule 0.15 percent of the Nets, according to the New York Times, but sold his stake to Jason Kidd and another investor in 2013.
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