It looks like the NBA is going to be the first of the big four American sports to go the way of soccer.
According to league commissioner Adam Silver, it is "inevitable" that NBA jerseys will soon be home to advertisements from corporate sponsors.
Speaking at the 2014 IMG World Congress of Sports presented by SportsBusiness Daily/Journal, Silver predicted a timescale of about five years for every single franchise in the league to be brandishing some sort of sponsoring on their shirts.
"It just creates that much more of an opportunity for our marketing partners to get that much closer to our fans and to our players," Silver said.
"It gives us an opportunity just to have deeper integration when it comes to those forms of sponsorship. ... Increasingly as we see Champion's League and English Premier League televised in the U.S., I think it's going to become more acceptable and more commonplace for our fans as well."
Sponsors on European soccer jerseys have been in place for decades and bring in a huge amount of money for some of the top teams.
Manchester United are paid around £53 million ($88,128,400) a year by Chevrolet for their record breaking sponsorship, and it doesn't seem too far-fetched that a side like the LA Lakers or Miami Heat could reap as enormous a deal.
After his presentation, Silver spoke to AdAge.com saying "almost all" of the NBA's corporate sponsors have expressed interest in slapping their corporate logos on player jerseys. "
I think it's coming. It's inevitable," he told the advertising and marketing website.
What do you think about sponsors on jerseys? Is it a good idea or would they look unsightly?
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