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Adam Silver opens NBA All-Star weekend, eyes high-tech future of game

NBA commissioner Adam Silver gestures during a news

NBA commissioner Adam Silver gestures during a news conference before the start of a game between the Knicks and the Wizards at the O2 Arena in London on Jan. 17. Credit: AP/Alastair Grant

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has opened the annual All-Star Technology Summit by touting the "smart jersey of the future."

Silver used an app on a phone to change the number and name on the back of a jersey that was displayed on the side of the stage where he spoke, flipping it from a Kemba Walker model to a Stephen Curry model to a Michael Jordan model. Silver laid out what a fully customizable fan experience may look like in the NBA in 2038, right down to changing the name on the jersey those fans wear to games.

Silver's address opened the summit, a platform for discussions about basketball's future and the role of evolving technology.

The tech summit is in 20th year and draws hundreds of top league executives. Panels are scheduled on sports betting, disruptive technology, the relationship between athletes and technology, and ways to attract fans of the so-called Gen Z — the 2.5 billion people worldwide born between 1997 and 2010.

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