NBA team sponsors TSM and NBA logo sponsor TBS have announced that they will suspend their NBA jersey sponsorships for ‘hundreds’ of years, according to the UK’s Telegraph.
The move is in response to TSM’s decision to pull out of the league following a controversial season in which the organization was criticized for the use of racial slurs.
TSM, which was formed in 2010 by the then-NBA player and NBA player-turned-basketball commentator Derrick Rose, had already said that it was suspending its NBA jersey and logo sponsorships, but did not specify how many years.
According to the Telegraph, TSM said the suspension would be “incredibly long” and would be the result of a “whole range of factors including the number of racist statements made on social media” and “the use of discriminatory language on social platforms and in public.”
The suspension will also include TSM members, TBS and ESPN’s sponsorships.TBS and its ESPN-branded logo sponsors have also pulled out of both the NBA and the NFL, though the latter was expected to be the most immediate fallout from the league’s response.
ESPN said in a statement to ESPN that it is suspending its partnership with TSM, as the league had previously said that the company was not responsible for its “racist statements and imagery.”
TSA also suspended its partnership, with the agency stating that TSM had “foolishly” shared offensive and insensitive content in the past, including one tweet that was “taken out of context.”TSM has also been criticized for its racist content, including an image of a black man being racially profiled and the use by TSM of the term “choke.”TSN’s Kevin O’Leary and Craig Morgan both said in interviews with the BBC that the team would have to “do a full re-branding” as the “NBA is now the NFL,” while the website Sports Illustrated said that “TSM was the team to beat for a long time.”