May 15 The Cleveland Cavaliers and Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co have reached an agreement that will place the company's "Wingfoot" logo on players' jerseys starting in the 2017-18 season, the two Ohio-based organizations said on Monday.
The deal is the latest to be announced as part of the NBA's three-year pilot program to sell ads on uniforms.
"Every Akron kid grew up seeing the Wingfoot in the sky on the blimp and feeling pride in our community," Akron native and four-time NBA Most Valuable Player LeBron James said in a statement. "There is something special for me personally about having that logo on the Cavs uniform."
The reigning NBA champion Cavs' wine uniforms will feature the gold-and-navy Wingfoot logo while the team's white uniform will feature the gold-and-wine Goodyear Wingfoot logo.
Cleveland's partnership with Akron-based Goodyear, the No. 1 U.S. tire maker, is the latest on the way as the Boston Celtics (General Electric), Sacramento Kings (Blue Diamond Almonds) and Philadelphia 76ers (StubHub) are among the handful of teams to have already signed deals.
The NBA last April became the first major North American sports league to announce plans to put ads on jerseys in a move that opens up a significant new revenue stream.
NBA teams are responsible for selling their own sponsorship and the patches will be about 2.5 inches square, much smaller than on European soccer jerseys, where corporate logos are the largest and most prominent part of the kit. (Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Clare Fallon)