MeiGray Group, a specialist in the authentic game-used jersey market, scored big recently when it inked a multi-year deal to supply collectors with jerseys from seven NBA teams. Participating teams so far include Atlanta, Dallas, Golden State, Houston, New York, Philadelphia and Portland.
Although MeiGray has carried NBA game-used jerseys in the past, and has become well known for its game-used NHL inventory, this deal is a significant next step for the company and the NBA, which continue to try to make inroads against the number of fakes that have flooded the market in recent years.
“What this means is that the teams we’re working with are guaranteeing collectors absolute authenticity,” said MeiGray president Barry Meisel. “They’re making sure they get the real thing. The NBA is doing a great thing. They’re taking the right steps, and we’re happy they chose us.
“It’s been in the works for several years. It’s fair to say we’ve been talking to the NBA for three years now. But that’s to be expected. It takes time to figure out a system that works and work out the details so we make sure we get it right.”
Under the agreement, MeiGray will receive the jerseys before they are worn and sew in a counterfeit-proof security tag. When the teams are finished with the jerseys, they will be returned to MeiGray and made available to the public.
“Throughout the course of the season MeiGray and the NBA will go back and forth with inventory reports, and we’ll literally log when the jerseys were worn,” Meisel said.
Among the scheduled highlights for the upcoming year are game-worn jerseys from Europe Live ’07 preseason games worn by Boston, Minnesota and Toronto; game-worn jerseys from China ’07 preseason games worn by Orlando and Cleveland; and Hardwood Classics game-worn jerseys from selected teams throughout the 2007-08 NBA season.