I attended a friend’s 50th wedding anniversary party last weekend and had multiple versions of the same conversation: When people asked and found out I was an NBA writer I often got some variation of this response, “Oh, I don’t watch the NBA anymore. Well, except sometimes Stephen Curry, I like him.”
While that’s anecdotal, the numbers back the concept up — Curry remains the league’s most popular player. By a healthy margin, when you factor in casual fans. He may be the most popular crossover star the league has had since Michael Jordan, or at last Shaquille O’Neal. He’s more popular with casual fans than LeBron James ever was, because Curry is human-sized, an underdog, and just plain relatable.
It should be no shock Curry leads the league in jersey sales.
Kobe Bryant second and LeBron third are too be expected, these guys are massive international brands with huge fan bases (and LeBron is still an elite NBA player on a contending team).
The big surprise is Kristaps Porzingis is fourth. Knicks fans see him as the franchise savior and are buying up his jerseys in preparation for the celebration they hope will come. Well, once the team gets a coach. And some more talent. But let’s not digress.
Here’s a look at the best-selling jerseys by position in the league.