The NBA announced Thursday that it will open up its jerseys to advertisers for the 2013-2014 season. Hours later, the NFL swooped in to scoop up all of the ad space.
"I've been waiting for the NBA, NHL or baseball to be dumb enough to do this," said a laughing Roger Goodell. "Turns out the NBA won the race to the bottom, and now we pretty much have a billboard on all of their jerseys. It's hilarious."
NBA commissioner David Stern says he knew he had been bested the moment his secretary told him Goodell was on the line yesterday evening.
"I should have known this was going to happen. The NFL has money to throw around," said Stern. "In my defense, I turned down his first offer. But then he said: 'Okay. I'll triple it. We both know many of your teams are in no position financially to turn this down.' And he was right. We're not. So now the NBA will play in jerseys that basically look like NFL t-shirts. It is what it is."
Goodell also inquired about sponsoring NBA courts to make them look like NFL fields and replacing arena backboards with flatscreens that show NFL highlights. Stern said he will run the ideas by NBA owners and get back to Goodell.
"Do I think the jerseys ads or anything else will raise our visibility any more or win us any additional fans?" said Goodell. "Probably not. But that's the point of doing this — reminding the other sports leagues that we're so much more rich and powerful than they are that we can just throw money away for fun. I just bought the Stanley Cup off of Gary Bettman for 300 grand cash. I'm going to make it an award for punters."