29 September 2022 - Article
The National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) recently launched Think450, its new internal marketing rights group. The current collective bargaining agreement gives the NBPA, not the NBA, the right to control the licensing rights of players (i.e., the ability to use players' names, numbers and images in groups of three or more for products and sponsorships). While a select number of superstars have agencies and business teams working on their behalf daily, Think450's efforts are targeted towards discovering the best business opportunities for the players as a collective group. As a symbol of commitment to every player, the number 450 represents the number of active players in the NBA. When the new collective bargaining agreement was agreed to in 2017, the NBPA was the only major sports union not in control of its licensing rights. The NBPA is obviously very excited about its ability to market its players. NBA players are very recognizable personalities and active social media users, attributes which would make brand partnerships easier to come by. Think450's goal of providing opportunities for all players to maximize opportunities in and out of the game is an extremely useful one, as players' careers and earnings can vary widely. Having the NBPA, an organization charged with representing the interests of all players, charged with maximizing player opportunities also seems like an ideal fit.