Cut the sleeves; NBA is ditching those alternate jerseys
With the NBA's new apparel deal with Nike coming into effect with the 2017-18 season, there's one change coming that most players and fans alike will rejoice - they're dumping the sleeved jerseys. Via Paul Lukas of Uni-Watch:
Nike, meanwhile, is expected to present its initial NBA jersey designs to retailers beginning this week. The company said it doesn’t plan to produce sleeved jerseys, a style debuted by Adidas in 2013 that received mixed reviews from players and fans.
The sleeved jerseys debuted back in 2014, and in the three years that they've been around I haven't met a single solitary person who liked them. I'm sure there's people out there that enjoy watching basketball played in shirts that look primed for the cricket field (or is that a pitch too?), but the only person I'm aware of that enjoys those grey sleeved jerseys the Celtics wear from time to time is Mike Gorman, and I'm willing to give him a pass. I like Mike.
What I imagine was merely an avenue for the NBA to generate a few extra bucks on some alternate jerseys, the sleeved shirts were certainly a failed experiment in that regard because according to Lukas the jerseys were not selling. I thought the jerseys were done for when Mr. royalty himself LeBron James went to meet with commissioner Adam Silver at the end of the 2014 season to express his displeasure for the jerseys, but I guess he doesn't hold as much weight as he thinks because they lasted another three seasons. That's even after Silver stated back in 2014 that if the players didn't like them, the jerseys would go away. Via SB Nation:
"Ultimately, if the players don't like them, we'll move on to something else," Silver told Bleacher Report. "I don't regret doing it for this season. But it's intended to be something fun for the fans and the players. And if it becomes a serious issue, as to whether players should be wearing sleeves, we'll likely move onto other things."
Ultimately the sleeved jerseys were just something else for the fans to buy, and with people not interested in purchasing a jersey with sleeves Nike is not going to continue to create a product people aren't buying. Plain and simple. Although it's tough to admit I agree with LeBron, those jerseys were gross.
Did anybody like the sleeves?
Photo Credit - GETTY Images
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