Emirates Named Global Airline Partner of the NBA

Emirates Named Global Airline Partner of the NBA

DALLAS — Emirates (EK) has been named the Official worldwide Airline Partner of the National Basketball Association (NBA) in a multiyear worldwide marketing collaboration unveiled today.

Along with becoming the NBA’s first-ever referee jersey patch partner, EK will also become the inaugural title partner of the NBA Cup, formerly known as the NBA In-Season Tournament. This interesting partnership marks a milestone for both organizations, bringing together a world-class airline with one of the most popular sports leagues in the world.

A6-EQE, Emirates Boeing 777-300ER @KSEA. Photo: Michael Rodeback/Airways
A6-EQE, Emirates Boeing 777-300ER @KSEA. Photo: Michael Rodeback/Airways

A Multi-faceted Collaboration


The partnership extends far beyond simply branding. Emirates will be prominently featured throughout various NBA events and initiatives, including the following.

  • Title sponsorship of the Emirates NBA Cup: Formerly known as the NBA In-Season Tournament, this revamped event will now bear the Emirates name, further solidifying the airline’s association with the league.
  • First-ever referee jersey patch partner: Emirates will be the first airline to display its logo on NBA referee jerseys, gaining immense visibility during every in-game. This unique partnership extends to the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) from the 2025 season and the NBA G League from the 2024/25 season.
  • Presence at marquee events: Emirates will be actively involved in various NBA events, including the NBA Crossover fan festival and the NBA Finals Legacy Project, further connecting with fans and communities.

We are proud to establish a global marketing partnership with the National Basketball Association to become its Official Global Airline Partner. This collaboration will also see Emirates become the league’s first referee jersey patch partner and the inaugural title partner of the NBA Cup. The NBA is a valuable addition to our sponsorship portfolio as it allows us to connect with a vast global fanbase, including in the U.S., where the game is an integral part of the country’s sports culture.

His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Emirates Group Chairman and Chief Executive.
A6-EVH, EMIRATES AIRBUS A380-800, KLAX LAX. Photo: Yifei Yu/Airways
A6-EVH, EMIRATES AIRBUS A380-800, KLAX LAX. Photo: Yifei Yu/Airways

Benefits for Fans and the NBA


This partnership promises exciting opportunities for both fans and the NBA.

  • Enhanced travel experiences: Fans can expect to see special NBA-themed content and promotions on Emirates flights, making their travel experience even more enjoyable.
  • Exclusive merchandise: Emirates will offer a unique selection of NBA merchandise, allowing fans to showcase their team spirit while traveling.
  • Global reach: The partnership will help the NBA expand its reach to a wider audience, particularly in the Middle East and Asia, where Emirates has a strong presence.

Emirates is a world-class airline that shares our commitment to engaging fans around the world in new and creative ways. As basketball continues to be recognized as the fastest growing sport globally, this collaboration will showcase the excitement of the NBA to the millions of people who fly Emirates every year.

NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum.

Feature Image: Emirates-NBA partnership. Photo: Emirates

Sharad Ranabhat mainly covers feature stories alongside other interesting articles. Having written for Sam Chui, Airlive, Travel Radar, Aviation Nepal and others, he aims to cover as many feature stories as possible here at Airways Magazine.

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