Buyer Awareness! Fanatics are selling fake sports memorabilia!




Most visitors to TealTownUSA or listeners of our podcast know that we’re not big fans of fanatics. We find their designs uninspiring and monolithic, their product quality obnoxious and inconsistent, and the lack of attention to detail is Documented almost daily on social media. While the product on the various online outlets they operate such as shop.nhl.com, nflshop.com and mlbshop.com are licensed and authentic, Fanatics owns other sites that sell replica sportswear.

Since we are notoriously anti-fanatics, people on social media regularly send us horrific stories and pictures of fanatics’ orders. Whether it’s T-shirts with the wrong number line, an inverted nameplate, or T-shirts that seem to fall apart after a single wash, stories keep coming. So far, all of the fanatics’ goods featured in the photos sent to us have been at least original, even if it takes months for buyers to receive their orders.

This latest horror story was sent via Twitter. They have posted photos of a replica of the Reebok Premier San Jose Sharks Joe Pavelsky’s jersey purchased from the Sharks store next to the “original” Premier jersey just purchased from SportsMemorabilia.com. The shirt from Sports Memorabilia is blatantly fake as you can see in the photos from the tweet.

fake pavelsky jersey
We found the site listing and the advertised jersey read “Signed Joe Pavelski Jersey – Reebok Premier 2016 Stanley Cup”. While the shirt appears to be legit in low-light photos, the customization makes it fake once you see it in person.

  • There is no “C” for the captain in the front (there was no picture of the forehead in the site listing)
  • The letters are pressed directly onto the shirt without a plate
  • The font is not accurate
  • Stanley Cup patch stitch, coloring and positioning is inaccurate
  • Quantum numbers are inaccurate
  • The number on the back is oversized and has square holes in the number instead of rectangles
  • It appears that Pavelsky’s signature in the photo from the site is different from that on the shirt received which means that the shirt received is not likely to be the one in the photo

SportsMemorabilia.com has issued a full refund after being informed that the jersey is not authentic. Although SportsMemorabila.com acknowledged that the jersey did not meet its guarantee of authenticity, They have resold Pavlesky’s shirt again for sale on their website Same price!!! This proves that they are intentionally and intentionally selling counterfeit goods.

While the shirt itself appears to be a replica of the Reebok Premier, no licensed retailer can sell this as legit with inaccurate lettering and correction, despite the guarantee of authenticity. Note that their guarantee does not promise that the autographs are authentic, but that their “memorabilia and collectibles” are authentic.

Authenticity Guarantee

Now, you might be asking yourself “what does this have to do with fanatics?” The answer is Fanatics own and operate SportsMemorabilia.com.

At the bottom of every page on SportsMemorabilia.com, it reads “Fanatics, Inc. , all rights are save. No part of this website may be reproduced or copied without the express permission of Fanatics, Inc.Also, a quick check of the domain name registrar shows that the site is registered through the same company.

During the returns process, when asked why the shirt was not authentic despite the website’s warranty, the customer rep told us on the phone call back “We rely on listings of trusted third-party sellers.” This excuse is a cop out. Fanatics run the site and tell customers that every item is foolproof. It is the responsibility of fanatics to validate and validate each and every ingredient and not doing so is negligent.

After delving into the site, we came across many fake, funny and obvious products. Take a look at some of these more visible fake T-shirts still available at SportsMemorabilia.com. Note that each page has a “Guarantee of Authenticity” in the upper right corner. Pay special attention to prices.

Zach Barris jersey

Fake Minnesota Jersey

Jeremy Roenick Jersey

Fake Chicago jersey with fake name plate

Joe Sakic Jersey

Fake Colorado jersey has a style Avalanche has never worn

Here is a short list of the fake NHL jerseys we found:

FYI, the Roenick shirt shown above is also listed on eBay, at a much lower cost.

Jeremy Roenick Jersey Jeremy Roenick Jersey - eBay

The literal billion-dollar question of course is…why do professional sports leagues, such as the NHL, NFL, MLB, NBA, and MLS contract fanatics? The perks of the Bay Area were like San Jose SharksAnd the San Jose Earthquakes San Francisco GiantsAnd the San Francisco 49ers, Oakland Athletics, Golden State Warriors, Sacramento Kings Aware of this shameful and illegal practice of selling counterfeit goods before signing their contracts? Check out the ridiculously bad fake 49ers and Giants jerseys of John Taylor and Sergio Romo currently available.

john taylor jersey Sergio Romo Jersey

While Taylor’s list is clearly a fake by the board alone, Romo’s list is comically bad. The giants wear cream shirts, not white. Only their gray away shirts feature the “San Francisco” tag on the front and the font they use is very different from this obnoxious. If you think this is a bad thing, pay special attention to the two Romo shirts available for purchase.

Sergio Romo repeat

SportsMemorabilia.com sells two different Romo T-shirts on their website, but they use the same image for each listing. Compare the unframed jersey photo with the framed jersey photo and you will find that it is the same jersey with a frame taken around the first photo. These are some of the most unethical and deceptive business practices we have ever witnessed. How is this legal? How can a fan expect to be a legitimate T-shirt or autograph when they use one photo to sell multiple T-shirts? Fanatics deliberately defraud the consumer!

Fanatics not only use SportsMemorabila.com to sell fake gifts to unsuspecting fans, but fanatics owner Michael Rubin also bought and uses the popular website SteinerSports.com. Take a look at completely different replica Evgeni Nabokov T-shirts for sale on both sites.

Steinersports

As you can see from the pictures, these are blatantly fake. The one on the left is a little better because at least the shirt looks like it might be a replica of the jersey and the correct font is used. However, the teal outlines on all figures are the wrong shade and misalignment. The one on the right is laughable because the number line and material are wrong and they use the ticket stub in the photo to hide the logo. When a consumer is asked to pay more than $400 for a signed T-shirt, shouldn’t the consumer expect the T-shirt to be authentic? No licensed seller can legally sell these t-shirts.

Fanatics have a bad habit of adding inaccurate inscriptions to signed merchandise. Case in point, Barclay Goudreau:

Barclay Goudreau Imp

For those fans who might be unaware, Game 7 winner Barkley scored Godrow in overtime, not a double overtime. When you score the biggest goal of your career, you remember every little detail. If you can’t correct minor details and ask the player to write the wrong thing on purpose, what else do you do?

Despite the fact that 99% of their Twitter responses are apologies, it’s clear that fanatics don’t care about fans. While the product they produce is substandard, it is at least licensed and official. The fact that they are intentionally and intentionally using other sites to sell fake T-shirts and other memorabilia that take advantage of unsuspecting fans is inexcusable and fraudulent.

Any teams and associations working with fanatics should immediately consider terminating their contracts with this monopolistic, fraudulent and unscrupulous company.


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