NBA Building Retail Alliance With adidas, Champs Sports

February 22, 2010: In an effort to expand its retail presence nationwide and make its official league gear available to more fans, the NBA is teaming with adidas this month to unveil the Official NBA Shop at Champs Sports. The store-within-a-store concept will debut in 69 Champs Sports stores in February and will be in the remaining 486 Champs Sports stores nationwide by the start of the 2010-11 NBA season.

The NBA currently drives the majority of retail customers to and The NBA Store in New York.

The rollout of the NBA Shop will begin at Champs Sports stores in Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Orlando, Portland and San Antonio. Additional shops will open in NBA playoff markets by May 1. The NBA and adidas said they would feature the NBA Shop at Champs Sports in "key marketing programs and promotions this spring with player appearances, social media promotions and the creation of unique fan experiences centered around key fashion collections." 

Separately, the NBA said it has signed a deal that names Papa John's as presenting sponsor of its Developmental League games on Versus for the remainder of the regular season. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The NBA Shop at Champs Sports will be a dedicated retail space featuring a wide assortment of adidas NBA performance and lifestyle apparel, including on-court products, fashion collections, and exclusive adidas NBA apparel and accessories year round. Adidas is the league’s official uniform and apparel provider. Many of Champs Sports locations are within malls.

"The launch of the Official NBA Shop further strengthens our positioning in the mall as the destination for any die-hard sports fan,”  Rob Brodersen, vp-marketing for Champs Sports, said in a statement. “We are very excited to unveil these shops in key markets this season leading up to a nationwide launch heading into the 2010-11 NBA season. The product assortment from adidas and the overall shop design will provide our consumers a terrific shopping experience within the mall."

The NBA Shop at Champs Sports will feature player imagery, a replica NBA backboard and a hardwood floor graphic to provide fans with the league’s authentic look and feel. Each shop will have a dedicated selection of local team products and an assortment of products representing some of the NBA’s most popular players. Items will include swingman jerseys, on-court shooting shirts, exclusive T-shirts, shorts, headwear, and track jackets. The NBA Shop at Champs Sports will also include exclusive NBA fashion collections from adidas.

According to  Lawrence Norman, adidas vp-global basketball, “As the official outfitter of the NBA, our unique partnership gives us an outstanding platform to develop innovative products that can improve athlete performance on-court, We’re excited to work with the NBA and Champs Sports to bring this product directly to NBA fans at a one-stop destination that provides authentic, fashionable gear for fans on and off the court.”

Regarding the NBA's deal with Papa John's, the pizza delivery service, which had a major presence during the Super Bowl as an official sponsor of the NFL, said it would use its presence in NBA D-League game telecasts to "bring 'Papa to the House' and emphasize its 'Better Ingredients. Better Pizza' brand image. The D-League regular season on Versus runs through April 3, prior to the D-League playoffs.

“John Schnatter founded our company 26 years ago by starting small and dreaming big, knowing that every quality ingredient was important,” Andrew Varga, CMO for Papa John’s International, said in a statement.  “We share in the big dreams for the NBA D-League, its players and its markets. Through Versus’ on-air telecasts we plan to bring ‘Papa’s In The House’ to this passionate sports community.”  

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