Sports Biz with Darren Rovell

What Are Practice Jerseys Really Worth?


Following in the footsteps of the NFL, the NBA will now allow teams to put its ads on practice jerseys, according to USA Today.

It seems to be the natural step towards, perhaps, one day putting ads on game jerseys, as the WNBA has already allowed its teams to do and the MLS has done for years.

But the truth is there’s a big difference between putting ads on practice jerseys and putting ads on game uniforms.

When will you ever see an ad on practice jerseys? The only time I can ever see it being shown is on local news coverage and of course nationally during the playoffs.

But being on a game jersey is a totally different ballgame. Not only do you get the ad on live games, you get exposure on highlights.

While Brett Yormark, CEO of the New Jersey Nets, acknowledges the big difference in value between practice jerseys and game jerseys, he says it’s still a step worth taking.

The practice jersey is not as valuable, but it’s the next step,” said Yormark, who said teams have not yet been notified of the exact guidelines. “It especially makes a lot of sense to sell as a package for teams who are selling naming rights to their new or existing practice facility.”

But is the money out there?

The concern from insiders is that companies have limited marketing budgets these days that are not growing. So if they spend money on a jersey sponsorship, they could be spending less on game advertising, which doesn’t really add value since it’s just shifting money from one area to another.

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