NBA: Beware of Counterfeit All-Star Merchandise

With basketball fans heading to New Orleans for NBA All-Star 2017 (Feb. 17-19), the National Basketball Association has cautioned unsuspecting fans against counterfeiters attempting to sell unauthorized and poorly made knock-off merchandise.

The NBA says counterfeiters not only victimize legitimate, tax-paying retailers in the New Orleans area, but they also take advantage of basketball fans who believe they are purchasing authentic NBA gear.

It’s been three years since the NBA last held the All-Star Game in New Orleans, which means NBA products will be at a premium throughout All-Star,” said NBA Executive Vice President and Deputy General Counsel Ayala Deutsch. “We expect official NBA merchandise will be in high demand, and it is our responsibility to protect fans by supplying them with the right information and tips to avoid purchasing products of inferior quality.”

To avoid being victimized by counterfeiters, the league urges basketball fans to:

* Look for the hologram sticker or holographic hangtag and a sewn-in or screen-printed label identifying the name of the NBA licensee (e.g., adidas, Stance, Mitchell & Ness).

* Shop at NBA-authorized retail locations, such as the NBA Store ─ A Fanatics Experience with locations at the Smoothie King Center, Mercedes-Benz Superdome, Sheraton New Orleans Hotel, Royal Sonesta New Orleans and InterContinental New Orleans – rather than buying items from street vendors, flea markets, or other questionable sources.

* Beware of ripped tags or irregular markings on apparel.

The NBA says it is working closely with federal, state and local law enforcement officials, who will be enforcing laws prohibiting the sale of counterfeit merchandise and unauthorized vending throughout NBA All-Star. According to a 2013 study done by Frontier Economics, the estimated value of international and domestic trade in counterfeits and pirated goods was between $710 billion and $970 billion globally per year, and is directly responsible for the loss of more than 2 million jobs annually.

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