02/16/2017 3:35 PM
The Atlanta Gladiators will wear specially designed "Boba Fett" jerseys Friday and Saturday as part of their annual specialty jersey weekend and fundraiser. The traditional "jersey off our backs" live auction will take place after Saturday's game in the main lobby of the Infinite Energy Arena.
"We've kicked around the idea of doing something Star Wars-related for a few years," said Christina Johnson, Gladiators Senior Director of Digital, Media, and Game Operations. "Star Wars Night is a huge draw for us, and by far the theme night our fans most get into. Our partnership with the Georgia Garrison of the 501st Legion gets stronger and more involved each season, and we felt that 2017 was finally the year to celebrate all that is 'The Force.'
"When we started the design process with Athletic Knit, we knew instantly we didn't want to go the traditional Star Wars-themed route," said Johnson. "We stumbled across the Boba Fett train of thought, and as we began to tweak the original design, we found ourselves more and more convinced this was the best look for us. Seeing the jersey in person this week far surpassed the artwork - and the artwork was amazing to begin with. We can't wait for our fans to see these jerseys in action this weekend."
Saturday night, fans will have the chance to watch and participate as the team takes the stage in the main lobby one-by-one to auction off their game worn jerseys. The proceeds from the event will benefit the Gladiators Foundation for Kids as well as the non-profit organizations participating in the Gladiators Fight Cancer Fundraiser Weekend March 11th & 12th.
The organization does one specialty jersey per year by design. "Lots of other teams in our league do multiple designs, and that's certainly their prerogative, but we have a long history of doing one lone design," Johnson explained. "One design per year, and the caveat that no design concept is repeated for 10 seasons, ensures that the investment our fans make in these jerseys is of the highest quality it could be. We don't flood the market with specialty jersey designs because we don't want to devalue the jerseys our fans spend their hard earned money on."
Winning bidders of the jerseys will have the opportunity to take the jerseys home with them that night if paying by credit card or cash. Winners paying by check will have their jersey retained at the Gladiators Front Office until the check has cleared. All winners will have the chance to meet their player (so long as he is on the current roster) and have them autograph the jersey. Fans may have the jersey washed after the game if they so choose.