Seeing Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors atop the NBA’s most popular jerseys and team merchandise lists was somewhat expected, considering that Curry has been playing out of his mind for going on two straight seasons, and the Warriors are the league’s defending champs.
But there were a few surprises.
Kobe Bryant coming in third is pretty incredible, because he’s playing in his 20th NBA season, and you would have thought that just about anyone who wanted a Bryant jersey would have picked one up by now. But perhaps his retirement announcement helped him gain a brand new set of fans.
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Kristaps Porzingis making his debut all the way at No. 4 seems kind of crazy, considering he’s played just half of his first NBA season. But he’s in the league’s biggest market, and with fans there desperate to find a new savior, Porzingis’ strong start made his jersey an easy choice for the fans in NYC.
Derrick Rose as high as No. 6 is also a little puzzling, considering the way many fans in Chicago have cooled on him after missing so much time due to injury. And when you see that the Bulls are second to only the Warriors in team merchandise sales, Jimmy Butler debuting on the list at 10 seems a little low.
And finally, seeing the Clippers come in at 10 on the team merchandise list is a bit of a surprise, even when considering they play in the league’s second biggest market. Despite the current state of the two Los Angeles franchises, L.A. has always been a Lakers town. But it’s clear that with the Lakers struggling for the past few years, the Clippers have been able to gain some ground.