As the 2017-18 NBA season tips off this week, many players will make their debut with new teams after one of the wildest offseasons in the history of the league.
But one of the biggest changes in the league has not just one player switching jerseys, but every player, as the NBA ended their partnership with Adidas and made Nike their official outfitter.
The new jerseys came out to much fanfare, with every team releasing a new look with a Nike swoosh (or Jordan Jumpman logo in the cast of the Hornets), and many teams featuring corporate sponsorship for the first time. Nike was also quick to do away with the much-maligned sleeved jerseys that fans and players alike largely disliked.
But while there were many things to like about Nike’s new jerseys, they have already showed that they have a major flaw — they rip a little too easily.
On opening night, LeBron James’ jersey tore straight down the back, right between the numbers. The tear came after Jaylen Brown defended James and grabbed at his back.
In other circumstances, the tear could’ve been chalked up to an unfortunate accident, but it was not the first time the new jerseys have come apart during their brief stint of in-game action.
During the preseason, Lakers’ guard Tyler Ennis’ jersey tore around the numbers.
Basketball fans on Twitter were quick to notice the tear, and make their jokes accordingly.
It is still early, but if problems like this persist, Nike may have to make adjustments to the way they construct their jerseys. At the very least, it’s not the type of publicity the brand was hoping for this early into their NBA debut.
The back of LeBron’s jersey ripped somewhere along the lines of that play.
LeBron’s jersey looking like my heart
— Raza (3-2) (@razau_) October 18, 2017
A Lebron jersey tore? That’s not supposed to happen until next summer
— Lakers Pulse (@LakersPulse) October 18, 2017
Kevin Harlan: “LeBron James’ jersey has been torn”
Reggie Miller: “That’s the second time I’ve seen one of these Nike jerseys rip”
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