Spalding no longer maker of official NBA basketball
The NBA has parted ways with longtime sporting goods company Spalding, which produces the NBA’s custom made basketballs. Spalding made the NBA’s basketballs for over 30 years.
The new game ball will be manufactured by Chicago-based company Wilson, starting with the 2021-22 season, according to a person familiar with the matter. Yahoo News previously reported that the NBA ended its deal with Spalding.
The sports company, which begin making the basketballs exclusively for the NBA starting in 1983, just advised the league on cleaning equipment once games resume from the Covid-19 stoppage.
After 30 years using leather balls, the company switched to a synthetic version of basketballs in 2006 only to suffer backlash. Spalding eventually sought feedback from players before making another switch. The company, which produced the world’s first basketball in 1894, became the official backboard of the NBA in 2009.