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Lakers extend with Delta, call up Emrani

LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers dribbles upcourt against PJ Washington of the Charlotte Hornets (by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

NBA basketball franchise the Los Angeles Lakers has agreed a long-term extension to its deal with Delta Air Lines, along with signing a new multi-season partnership with law firm Jacob Emrani.

Delta will continue as the Lakers’ official and exclusive airline partner, with the new contract to be marked with the launch of an innovative ticketing activation. Showtime Seat Exchange will grant fans unable to use tickets to one of four games the opportunity to gift two or four of their tickets to a local non-profit.

In exchange for this offering, Delta will provide the ticket holder with a flight voucher for domestic, round-trip air travel. The local charities receiving the game tickets will be: After-School All-Stars, Los Angeles; Bob Hope USO; Junior Achievement of Southern California; and KIPP LA Public Schools.

The first game under the scheme will be the November 15 encounter against the Sacramento Kings, followed by fixtures against the Denver Nuggets (December 22), Portland Trail Blazers (January 15) and the March 15 game against the Nuggets.

Delta’s new contract will also include an increased presence on Lakers social and digital channels, via programs such as the Showtime Seat Exchange; the customisation of courtside seat backs, to be changed throughout the season, showcasing Delta brand initiatives; and the continuation of monthly Salute to Troops programming.

Delta has partnered with the Lakers since 2011. Scott Santoro, Delta’s vice-president for Los Angeles and West sales, said: “The launch of ‘Showtime Seat Exchange’ allows our organisations to make a strong, aligned impact, connecting our community and customers through this unique program.”

Meanwhile, the agreement with Jacob Emrani will include in-arena fan engagement and social activation. Emrani is the iconic face of personal injury law in Los Angeles, utilising his famed CallJacob.com moniker.

Emrani will also be sponsoring a new Call Jacob Selfie Race video feature, where fans get to submit their selfie to be featured in the race on the videoboard and win cash prizes. In addition, Emrani will make available a Staples Center suite for one game that he intends on sharing with other local Lakers fans.

Lakers president of business operations, Tim Harris, said: “Jacob’s longtime support of the organisation, along with his desire to help enhance the fan experience, aligned with the qualities we were looking for in a sponsor. He is one of our most passionate and loyal fans, as well as an admired member of the Los Angeles community, and we are thrilled to have him join the team.”