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Emirates and NBA Forge Game-Changing Partnership: Emirates NBA Cup

Emirates has entered a strategic agreement with the National Basketball Association, positioning itself as the NBA’s Official Global Airline Partner. The partnership marks a new chapter for the NBA, with Emirates acting as the first title sponsor for the Emirates NBA Cup.

Emirates NBA partnership

Unveiling the Emirates NBA Cup: A Groundbreaking Collaboration

Emirates Airline has partnered with the National Basketball Association (NBA) to sponsor the in-season NBA Cup. The event is now the Emirates NBA Cup. Under this agreement, the airline’s branding will be integrated into the event’s promotional materials. Logos featuring both Emirates and the NBA will be visible on the league’s digital platforms and during key games of the tournament. The collaboration marks a notable intersection of international air travel and worldwide sports engagement.

A First Look: Emirates on NBA Referee Jerseys

The collaboration includes Emirates’ logo on the officials’ attire, debuting during the NBA All-Star Game in 2024. This change introduces a new visual element connecting Emirates with the NBA during gameplay.

Executive Perspectives

His Highness, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum of Emirates Group, celebrates this association, saying:

“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.  With basketball’s popularity around the world, we are excited to work with one of the most globally recognized and prestigious professional leagues.  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 sport culture.”

NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum highlights the synergy between the organizations, saying:

“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.”

Expanding Emirates’ NBA Footprint

The partnership between Emirates and the NBA extends beyond mere logo placement. It encompasses a range of collaborative endeavors, including Emirates’ involvement in NBA Crossover events. Emirates will also feature NBA content on its ice in-flight entertainment system, including long-form documentaries, player profiles, interviews, and more.

The Emirates brand will be prominently showcased across various NBA activities as a part of the agreement. The NBA Finals Legacy Project will feature Emirates branding, enhancing the airline’s visibility.

The Emirates Store will offer a selection of official NBA merchandise. This includes items such as basketballs, sportswear, and retro collectibles. There are plans to introduce co-branded merchandise collaborations later in the year. Furthermore, the Emirates loyalty program, Skywards Miles, allows fans to obtain unique basketball memorabilia. These items are available through the Emirates Store at the Emirates’ Headquarters in Dubai and online at

Beyond the NBA: Emirates Dresses WNBA and G League Refs

The Emirates patch will also feature on Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) referees’ jerseys from the 2025 season and the NBA G League jerseys starting in the 2024-25 season.

Emirates’ collaboration with the NBA extends to the 73rd NBA All-Star Game held at the Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana. This event brings together basketball enthusiasts from around the world. The game will reach viewers in 214 countries and territories and broadcast in 60 languages across various platforms, including television, digital channels, and social media networks.

Connecting the World to Basketball

Emirates has supported basketball within the Middle East for nearly three decades, particularly in the UAE and Lebanon. The airline has promoted the sport, creating engagement opportunities for dedicated basketball followers locally and internationally.

Emirates Flights to U.S.

Serving 12 U.S. cities, Emirates offers travelers access to basketball’s heartland. Emirates currently flies to Boston Logan International Airport (BOS), New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH), Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport (ORD), Washington D.C.’s Dulles International Airport (IAD), Seattle Tacoma Airport (SEA), Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR), Dallas-Fort Worth Airport (DFW), San Francisco International Airport (SFO), Miami International Airport (MIA) and Orlando International Airport (MCO).

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