NBA Jersey Licensing – Part I (MacGregor Sand-Knit)

These days, sports apparel brands pay top dollar to be the exclusive uniform provider for professional sports leagues, and when those deals are made, the sports media reports on them. For instance, Nike’s recent $1 billion dollar deals with the NFL and NBA were widely reported. But prior to Reebok’s exclusive uniform deals with the NFL (winter 2000) and the NBA (summer 2001) , financial figures for the uniform deals were never released in the media. In fact, even mere mentions of the deals are difficult to find. As a result, the history of NBA uniform licensing is difficult to piece together. But as a jersey collector, it’s important to have a basic comprehension of uniform licensees over the past 30 years. It will help you determine which players and teams might be available from a certain brand like MacGregor Sand-Knit, Champion, Puma, Starter, Nike, Reebok or Adidas. It’s also an important first step in determining which jerseys are legit and which are counterfeits.

Several years ago when I first started trying to establish the timeline of Champion’s uniform licensing agreement with the NBA during the 1990s, I was not able to find one resource that accurately laid out NBA uniform licensing deals. I bounced around to different collector forums to try to piece it together, but found a lot of conflicting information and inaccuracies. Furthermore, no one had any supporting documentation backing up their claims. So I spent substantial time researching and piecing it all together. This series of posts are dedicated to providing an accurate, comprehensive look at the history and evolution of NBA jersey licensing. I have included links throughout this post to numerous articles, advertisements, product photos, etc. that backup my research.

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Champion NBA Jersey Archive….

My closet circa 2003

My closet circa 2003

For the past 15 years I have collected and sold Champion basketball jerseys. Over that time I have documented over 1,200 different jerseys. All of that content just collected in a folder on my computer….until now. For the past ten years I have wanted to create a blog-o-site that contained a comprehensive photo archive of every Champion NBA replica jersey ever made. But I didn’t have time, and I thought since the internet has everything, someone would eventually come along and create it. But, as the popularity of Champion jerseys continues to increase, there still is no place on the web where enthusiasts/collectors can go to see/discuss/learn about Champion basketball jerseys. Maybe I’m the only one who cares that much, and maybe that’s a problem…my girlfriend tends to think so. But nonetheless, this is my gift to the internet…which is now one step closer to containing everything ever.

Over the next several months, I’ll attempt to post one team gallery per week. Eventually as more content is posted, you’ll be able to search by player as well. And hopefully at some point, I’ll create galleries for the NCAA jerseys and for the NBA Authentic jerseys as well. But for right now, my focus is just on adult Champion NBA replica jerseys.

My blog posts will be aimed more at collectors and enthusiasts…more heavy on detail and history. But this site is for all NBA fans who grew up during the 90s and want to take a look back at uniform designs, players, etc. Champion jerseys capture a moment in time for the NBA from 1991 through 2002….my favorite period in basketball.

There are no jerseys for sale on this site, this is merely for historical purposes and for reference. If you own a jersey that is not posted on a published team page, send me photos and I’ll post it and give you credit. The whole goal of this site is to be a complete archive, so definitely appreciate any help from fellow collectors!