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Bench Talk / Off The Wire

Basketball season is fast approaching.


The NBA will open the season on Tuesday October 17th, the earliest opening night in 37 years.


Hi, this is Fred Wallace with " Off the Wire ".

The NBA will open the season on Tuesday October 17th, the  earliest opening night in 37 years.
Among the games on opening night,  the Cleveland Cavaliers will face the Boston Celtics in an Eastern Conference final rematch, plus the defending NBA Champion Golden State Warriors will host the Houston Rockets.

Also notable with the early start to the season is the new look on the jerseys.

Sponsorships have been introduced across the N-B-A as part of a 3-year pilot program.

Is there anybody who doesn't believe this pilot project will be the norm, and is there anyone who doesn't believe other team sports won't follow suit ?

In a world filled with a barrage of advertisements at every turn, why should an NBA jersey be exempt ?

The Toronto Raptors are in on the act.

When the Raptors hit the floor this season they will wear a patch with a Sun Life logo on the front left shoulder of the jersey.

And while the logo will make a cosmetic alteration for the jersey, the bigger impact will be financial as Sun Life has committed to a $ 5 million tab for the partnership.

Like it or not, jersey sponsorships have arrived in the NBA, my guess is for the long term, and it won't be long till baseball and hockey also cash in.

I'm Fred Wallace

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