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NBA players to get a big upgrade in the air


Inside the Mavericks' 757


If you feel a little cramped in your airplane seat, think what it would be like if you were 7'2" and trying to sit in that seat! That's a real issue for NBA players, and it's why the teams fly on specially-equipped charter flights.


Delta has the contract for nearly all the NBA teams, and is about to upgrade the experience by shifting from a fleet of A319s to newly-renovated 757s, which have more room for all the amenities and tall bodies. The A319 is designed for 126 passengers, but are fitted out with lounge seats that accommodate the 50 people who typically travel, including players, staff and press.


The 757, a 180-seat plane, will be set up to do the same job in more space, allowing up to 5 feet of footroom per seat. Delta will sell 11 757s to a leasing company which would then lease them to a trust controlled by the NBA. Delta will still maintain and fly the planes. All but three NBA teams are part of the deal; two use another carrier and one, the Dallas Mavericks, has its own 757.


There's another possible gain in this for Delta: putting the smaller A319s back into regular service instead of the larger 757s allows Delta to reduce capacity on some routes and keep capacity matched to the prices it wants to get. 



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