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Wilson to replace Spalding as NBA's official basketball manufacturer

Wilson to replace Spalding as NBA's official basketball manufacturer
Wilson will replace Spalding as the league's ball manufacturer starting in the 2021-22 season. File Photo by Gary C. Caskey/UPI | License Photo

May 13 (UPI) -- The NBA and Wilson announced a multiyear partnership Wednesday that will make the sporting goods company the official game ball of the league again.

Wilson will replace Spalding starting with the 2021-22 season, according to the league. The 2020-21 campaign will be Spalding's 37th and final season as the NBA's basketball manufacturer.

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Wilson, the NBA's original ball producer, also will provide game basketballs for the WNBA, the G League and the upstart Basketball Africa League.

"This partnership with Wilson returns us to our roots as we plan for the future," Salvatore LaRocca, NBA President of Global Partnerships, said in a statement. "We were partners for 37 seasons dating back to when Wilson manufactured the first official NBA basketballs in 1946, and we look forward to growing the game of basketball together."

The WNBA will switch to the Wilson basketball in 2022.

The NBA said Wilson will create the game balls using the same leather provider, and the new basketballs will keep the same eight-panel configuration and performance specifications as the ones currently used. Players in the league will work jointly with Wilson to develop and approve the new ball.

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