NBA goes back to Wilson, replaces Spalding as official ball manufacturer

The balls used during the 2019 NCAA tourney (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)

By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña

After 37 years, the National Basketball Association switched back from Spalding to Wilson as their official ball manufacturer.

Wilson made basketballs for the league from 1946-1983 and after that span, Spalding began to take over and was the official ball during the Magic-Bird, Jordan, Kobe-Shaq, Spurs, Miami, and Golden State eras.

With the league entering its 75th season, the announcement regarding the change will also be effective for the G league, WNBA, and the Basketball Africa League.

“Our commitment to growing the game of basketball on the global stage is at the heart of Wilson and our new partnership with the NBA,” Wilson Basketball general manager Kevin Murphy said.

The new balls NBA will still use the same leather and will have the steady eight-panel configuration while the WNBA will continue to have a composite material.

“Our passion for this game and the league runs incredibly deep, as does our history with it. And as we start this new chapter in the game, our focus and energy will be on supporting the league and the players, coaches and fans with the most advanced, high-performance game basketballs possible,” Murphy added.