Marketing oneself holds such significance, especially in the modern world where the reach is unimaginable when marketed in a proper way. When Paul George opted to change his jersey number from 24 to 13.
Picking up jersey no. 24 as a tribute to Kobe Bryant seems only natural to anybody stepping into professional at a time when Bryant was one of the best players around. That is what Paul George did. And he did it in a manner exceptional enough for his college team retire the jersey number.
“I was just superstitious about changing my number,” he had said at the time of changing his number. “Being with 24 for as long as I can remember. It’s always been one of my favorite numbers, and being a big Kobe [Bryant] fan growing up had a little bit to do with it. I was superstitious about it….
Entering his NBA career, he did not find any reason to change his Kobe-fanboy jersey. Paul George started his NBA career in the 2010 when he was drafted in by the Indiana Pacers with the 10th overall pick. He made through in the NBA All Rookie second team. And another season later, the NBA Most Improved player and an NBA All Star.
Perhaps, he then felt the pull of the brand he was establishing himself into. And what Paul George- the brand can achieve. For that “PG-13” certainly seems more catchy. He explained it after his decision to change his number, talking to vigilant sports.
“And the whole thing behind PG-13 is just coming into my own. I feel like I’m at that stage where I’m ready to embrace everything that comes with being one of the young stars in this league. Everyone knows PG-13 is related to television, so the whole thing is being able to enjoy the show and being fun to watch.”
And like all other things, the marketing venture of Paul George had a price to pay. As per NBA rules, a player who changes jersey numbers on the same team must buy up all of the old jerseys on the market. George had to buy out all of his Pacers jerseys to change his number.