Neophyte NBA commissioner, Adam Silver, speaking at the IMG World Congress of Sports (which is apparently a real thing), was asked if he envisions sponsorships appearing on player jerseys in the next five years. Without hesitation he responded, "Definitely." This, of course, is not revelatory, as there has been smoke coming from this fire pit for years. But the foregone conclusion of his answer, making a foray where none of the other major North American team sports have gone, still felt surprising. He would later add fuel to the fire stating, "Its inevitable. Its such an enormous opportunity for our sponsors to connect with us. I think the marketplace is asking for it." There is something sitting uneasily in those words. First, an admission. I get it. This is the way of the world and not just in athletics. Corporate advertisements are now an integral part of bringing sports and entertainment to the masses. Ads subsidize a ton of beloved stuff from music festivals to television series to this website. I am thankful for the ad models that bring value to the advertisers and consumers alike. Frankly, at this point if an event doesnt have corporate sponsors it feels amateur to my eye. But my beef is that the NBAs latest revenue tool doesnt arrive with even the most basic pretence of being a value add for the consumer, and at a time when the league is massively, historically profitable. It isnt even a plea from the league to fans to understand that novel revenue tools are needed to sustain stability or whatever. Its just that "the marketplace is asking for it." (Quick note before further maligning the Commish. He did admit yesterday that maybe the whole t-shirt-as-jersey experiment the NBA launched towards the end of last season isnt a lock to pan out. Phew.) The precedent of sponsored jerseys has long been established in countless sports from international soccer to Nascar. (This is apparently a Liverpool FC jersey for kids though that wouldnt have been my first guess.) Even sibling leagues, the WNBA and NBA D-League, have encouraged and profited from jersey sponsorship for several years. Um, but when Commissioner Silver says "the marketplace is asking for it" he is hedging on what the marketplace actually is. Shouldnt the marketplace consider the biggest stakeholders and contributors in the hard-earned dollars-to-NBA equation (AKA the fans)? Numerous related tweets and blogs have erupted in the past few days concerned about the same distractions 1981-me dealt with. But despite a tendency to stand in solidarity, I find myself less than concerned. My focus is not so much aimed at the inevitable uniform developments, but more on predicting the next step. Where will the advertising stop? If the NBA allows the final frontier of their reach, the players clothes, to be monetized by sponsors, how much would it diminish their capacity to limit players from earning off their own skin? Players are already more or less free to cut private sponsorship deals in practically every segment of product or service. Wouldnt the league erode their own ethical (read: judicial) high ground that might have otherwise prevented a player from tattooing an ad on their neck or sleeving their arms with monthly specials? With the next collective bargaining session set for three years from now, it is altogether possible that the questions raised by these types of sponsorships will be debated for the first time. What is without question is that how to divvy up the new-found revenue from jersey ads will loom large. I dont know a ton about the inner-workings of the mind of agents, but I suspect they dig on money and material if HBOs Entourage has taught me anything. What is to keep those agents from speculating on the next set of potential revenue tools? This new territory is, of course, a way for neophyte commissioner, Adam Silver, to make his mark on the league and, more importantly, to get in the good graces of team owners and league sponsors. I do not have a problem with these tactics as they are baked into his job description. But when the final vestiges of the basic game have to share space with sponsors who subsidize it, and in a time when the NBA is flourishing, I havent heard a word on what we fans get out of this latest version of the marketplace, other than a personal expectation that whats to come would have blown 1981-mes head straight off. Gallays Poll #4 Where should the NBA draw the line on advertisements? a) A small patch on the jersey is no big deal. But thats it.b) I dont mind if they re-name the Raptors with pretty much any corporate identity. But thats it.c) With so many inked players, I have no problem if Birdman becomes Kentucky Fried Birdman. But thats it.d) The back of the jersey is the future of innovation as Metta World Artest demonstrated. Lebron Jameson Irish Whiskey would move merchandise. Cheap Jordan Shoes Paypal Accepted . She was a pioneer. She did things on skis that made the birds take notice. Wholesale Balenciaga Speed Trainer . -- John Senden never imagined it would take more than seven years to win again. http://www.brandshoescheaponline.com/who...rance-sale.html. -- Cole De Vries had a couple of key strikeouts during what could have been the inning that doomed him to defeat against the Kansas City Royals, allowing him to escape further damage and keep the game tied up. Yeezy Boost 350 v2 Wholesale . - Benched Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Josh Freeman said he has Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and voluntarily entered the NFL substance abuse program more than a year ago after mistakenly taking a medication to treat the condition. Balenciaga Speed Trainer Discount . -- Raiders wide receiver Jacoby Ford made it through a third straight practice without any setbacks and expects to play in Oaklands regular-season finale against San Diego.Edmonton’s goaltending has turned around, a sudden reversal of fortune for Kuemper, a productive Matt Cooke and more in Scott Cullen’s Statistically Speaking. HEROES Ben Scrivens – 29-save shutout against Montreal. After a miserable start to the season, during which he stopped 80% of the shots he faced in his first three appearances, Scrivens has recovered nicely, with a .945 save percentage in the past five games, the last four of which are Oilers wins. Mats Zuccarello – Scored a goal and two assists, and had the best possession stats (16 shot attempts for, 8 against) for the Rangers in their 5-4 win over Minnesota. Derick Brassard – Also had a goal and two assists, to ignite the Rangers’ third-period comeback. With Derek Stepan injured, the Rangers needed Brassard to step up and he has, with four goals and seven points, with strong possession (55.3% of even-strength shot attempts) in nine games, playing a career-high 17:29 per game for the Blueshirts. ZEROES Darcy Kuemper – Through his first five starts of the season, the Wild goaltender had allowed a toal of four goals against and, after two shutout periods against the Rangers, it was looking like more of the same was in store, but then Kuemper surrendered five goals on 12 shots in the third period as Minnesota coughed up a 3-0 lead to eventually lose 5-4. Questionable Rangers Hits – Both Rangers LW Chris Kreider and D John Moore were ejected from the game for delivering questionable hits. Kreider caught Wild D Jonas Brodin with a shove from behind approaching the end boards behind the Wild net and Moore laid out Wild C Erik Haula with a high and late hit after Haula had directed a shot towards the Rangers net. Kreider appears to be off the hook, while Moore is facing a hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety. SHORT SHIFTS With a goal and an assist against the Rangers, Wild LW Matt Cooke now has five points in seven games, while playing only 10:58 per game. According to Puckalytics, Among players to play at least 50 minutes at 5-on-5, Cooke ranks 13th in points/60 minutes with 4.07…The player who ranks first, Rick Nash, had a goal and an assist for the Rangers, giving him nine goals in nine games (and 6.22 PTS/60) this season…Canadiens RW Brendan Gallagher generated 10 shot attempts ( 4 SOG) and had an impressive possession game (20 shot attempts for, 7 against, 74.1%)…Montreal’s top possessiion player was D Nathan Beaulieu (15 for, 5 against, 75.dddddddddddd0%)…Wild RW Jason Pominville had 10 shot attempts (5 SOG)…Edmonton’s line of Boyd Gordon, Matt Hendricks and Jesse Joensuu started every one of their shifts in the defensive zone. In Gordon’s case, that was 11 defensive zone starts, with none in the offensive and neutral zones. They also spent most of their night remaining in the defensive zone, as all three had fewer than 15% of the shot attempts when they were on the ice at even strength LINEUP NEED TO KNOW With Nikita Nikitin out, Brad Hunt was inserted into the Oilers’ lineup. Hunt played 18:26, though had some possession problems (6 shot attempts for, 13 against, 31.6%) against Montreal. Once Moore was ejected, Rangers D Kevin Klein played a season-high 23:19, putting up a goal and an assist. FANTASY FOCUS It’s a busy night on the ice, with a dozen games. Here are a handful of players that you may want to consider for your roster: Dennis Wideman – The Flames’ defenceman has scored goals in four straight games and has played more than 23 minutes in three of the past four games. Damien Brunner – Scratched early in the season, the Devils’ winger has three points in his last three games and has played more than 17 minutes in three of his four games since he was inserted into the lineup. With Martin Havlat and Mike Cammalleri out, there is room for Brunner to play in a scoring role with New Jersey. Nikita Kucherov – As injuries pile up among Tampa Bay’s forwards, Kucherov is taking advantage of an increased role, with four points in the past two games, the first two games this season in which Kucherov has played at least 14 minutes. Dany Heatley – The veteran power forward is expected to make his Ducks debut tonight in Chicago, in the plum spot on left wing with Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry. Nick Bonino – There were questions about whether Bonino would be able to handle the second-line centre role in Vancouver, but he’s off to a fine start, with seven points in eight games and all of his points have come at even strength, another positive considering that he scored 20 power play points of his career-high 49 total points last season. Much of the data included comes from www.war-on-ice.com, www.puckalytics.com, www.hockeystats.ca and www.naturalstattrick.com Scott Cullen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org ' ' '