NBA Fans Can Now Change Numbers On Jerseys

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NBA Fans Can Now Change Numbers On Jerseys
February 24, 2019

- NBA commissioner Adam Silver presented the demo at an off-the-record technology symposium in Charlotte ahead of Sunday's All-Star Game 

- The idea is part of the NBA's push towards a more customized fan experience

- Using a phone app, fans could change the name and number on the jersey

- Silver explained that the smart jersey would not be available for 20 years or so

- The NBA has not revealed how the shirt works, or how it was developed. The league's apparel partner, Nike, was not involved with the demo 

- In recent years, as NBA stars have decided to switch teams during free agency, fans have filmed themselves burning the outgoing players' replica jerseys 

 

The lifespan of an NBA replica jersey may be getting longer thanks to new concept apparel that would allow fans to digitally change the name and number on the back to reflect the roster moves of their favorite teams.

 

NBA commissioner Adam Silver presented the demo of the concept shirt at an off-the-record technology symposium in Charlotte ahead of Sunday's All-Star Game. The idea is part of the league's overall push towards a more customized fan experience.

 

Using a phone app, fans could change the name and number on the jersey, although Silver explained that the technologically advanced shirt may not be available in stores for another 20 years or so. 

Using a phone app, fans could change the name and number on the jersey, although NBA commissioner Adam Silver (in the suit) explained that the technologically advanced shirt would not be available to fans for another 20 years or so
Ahmad Rashad, the former Minnesota Vikings wide receiver and NBA sideline reporter, was on stage with Silver for the unveiling. 'Can you do something with my jersey?' said Rashad, who was wearing a replica of Michael Jordan's red Chicago Bulls jersey
Silver said he couldn't do anything with Rashad's 'old-school jersey,' but he could change the black Stephen Curry replica into a Michael Jordan jersey with the help of his phone app 

 

Ahmad Rashad, the former Minnesota Vikings wide receiver and NBA sideline reporter, was on stage with Silver for the unveiling.

 

'Can you do something with my jersey?' said Rashad, who was wearing a replica of Michael Jordan's red Chicago Bulls jersey.

 

'I can do nothing with this old-school jersey, Ahmad,' said Silver, who was holding a phone in his hand.

 

'I can change that one to '23,' Silver said, motioning towards a black Stephen Curry jersey with the number '30' that sat in a glass case on the stage.

 

'You can change the number and the name?' asked Rashad, who happens to be a longtime friend of Jordan's.

 

At that point, Curry's '30' became scrambled and Jordan's '23' emerged.

 

'That is so cool,' Rashad said. 'I need one of them.'

Rashad will need to wait a few decades, or so, but the demo is a window into the league's new approach with fans.   

 

The NBA has not revealed how the shirt works, or how it was developed. The league's apparel partner, Nike, was not involved with the demo.

 

The basic NBA replica jersey on NBA.com goes for $109.99.

 

In recent years, as NBA stars have decided to switch teams during free agency, fans have filmed themselves burning the outgoing players' replica jerseys.

 

Boston Celtics and New York Knicks fans were even seen burning the replica jerseys of Isaiah Thomas and Kristaps Porzingis, both of whom were traded by their respective teams.

 

The NBA has been making strides from a technological standpoint in recent years. Advancing virtual reality technology is already being used to bring live games and highlights to fans.

 

And as ESPN's Marc Spears reported from the Friday's conference, Silver mentioned face-recognition technology making tickets obsolete and creating personalized game experiences for fans based on their on-line profiles.   

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