NBA unveils sleeved Adidas jerseys for Christmas Day games
The NBA and Adidas unveiled Thursday the short sleeve jerseys that will be worn during this year's Christmas Day quintuple-header. The solid-color "BIG Logo" jersey designs feature an over-sized team logo on the front; the player's number has been moved from the chest to the left sleeve. "Holiday-inspired" warm-ups and shirts will accompany the jerseys.
Images of a few of the jerseys leaked last week. All 10 sleeved jersey designs that will be worn on Christmas can be seen in the gallery below.
Christmas Day's quintuple-header will go down as follows: Bulls at Nets (12 p.m. ET), Thunder at Knicks (2:30 p.m. ET), Heat at Lakers (5 p.m. ET), Rockets at Spurs (8 p.m. ET), and Clippers at Warriors (10:30 p.m. ET).
To build the excitement for the annual showcase event and to show off the new duds, the NBA released Wednesday a "Jingle Hoops" commercial that stars LeBron James, Derrick Rose, Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry, James Harden and Steve Nash in their team's respective sleeved Christmas jerseys.
In the spot, Rose, Durant, Curry, Harden and Nash shoot jumpers into baskets that have bells on the bottom of the net.
"Tune it up, K.D." Rose tells Durant.
"That sounds good right here," the Thunder All-Star forward responds as he hits a jumper to start a procession of jingling.
The five players then continue shoot to the tune of the One-Horse Open Sleigh Christmas carol before James cruises in to finish an alley-oop dunk and complete the song.
"Please tell me the camera was on," the four-time MVP exclaims as the ad concludes. For a look at how the spot was made, check out target="_blank">this behind-the-scenes video.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the NBA and Adidas are continuing to plug away at the sleeved jersey concept, much to the dismay of traditionalists, who prefer a tank top look. Their reasoning boils down to a belief that a shirt-style uniform has a wider marketing appeal for fans.
"We know fans want to wear the authentic product that the players are wearing," says Chris Grancio, head of global basketball sports marketing at Adidas. "In the NBA, it's just harder for fans to do that because a tank top is just a little bit more difficult to wear."
"A shirt with short sleeves can probably be worn a little bit more effectively than a shirt with no sleeves," says Sal LaRocca, executive vice president of global merchandising for the NBA.
Last year, the NBA unveiled its Christmas Day jerseys, which were sleeveless and monochromatic.