The reality of things is that most people don’t want to make the trek out to New Jersey to watch the wholly uninspiring Nets. Which is why the organization has to resort to these kinds of tacky moves in order to create buzz for itself. They have no other choice.
The Nets’ marketing team — God bless them — will do just about anything to get you to buy a ticket. In the summer, they made it clear that cheering for the opposition is more than encouraged (in fact, they’ll help you do it); now, for a large chunk of change, their players are not only required to play ball, but they’re also being made available for snot-nosed kids’ birthdays and bar mitzvahs.
The AP explains:
For $25,000, the Nets are offering four courtside tickets for 10 games, parking, access to a private lounge at the Izod Center with free food and beverages and something more — a one-hour appearance by a Nets player of your choice at your home, office, school or party.
“It will be interesting to have an NBA player come to your birthday party or come to your bar mitzvah or even just coming to your house for dinner for an hour when your friends are over,” Nets chief executive Brett Yormark said. “That’s a terrific thing and it’s tough to put a price tag on it.”
This promotion has the potential to fail in so many spectacular ways: Imagine some CEO, furious after yet another loss, forcing one of the Nets to show up at his office so he can get yelled at for an hour?
Naturally, the players will in no way be compensated for this service. New Jersey Nets basketball, everyone.