The real reason Angel Reese chose Reebok over Nike in endorsement deal

Abu Mubarik May 09, 2024
Angel Reese has declared for the 2024 WNBA draft -- Photo Credit: CCS Pictures

In 2023, a report from SponsorUnited stated that former LSU star Angel Reese had the most NIL deals of any college basketball player. At the time, she had signed 17 NIL deals totaling $392,000 per year with brands such as Calvin Klein, Bose, JanSport, McDonald’s, Xfinity, and Coach, among others.

The multiple deals she signed put her net worth at an estimated $1.3 million per year, CNBC reported, citing sports media platform On3. The Maryland native’s success comes largely on the back of the growth of her social media handles. She now has over one million followers on both Instagram and TikTok, going from LSU sensation to social media influencer.

In a recent move that got everyone talking, the former LSU standout turned down a lucrative endorsement deal from Nike in favor of signing with Reebok. The decision received both praise and criticism from industry players but Reese said the move underscores her desire to create her own path.

According to her, Reebok has no prominent female basketball figure and she wants to fill that space. Her relationship with NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal, who is associated with Reebok, also influenced her decision.

O’Neal currently serves as Reebok’s first president of basketball, a newly created position as part of the brand’s attempt to reenter professional performance basketball. His appointment was not in a vacuum.

He has been a Reebok partner for decades. He even signed with the shoe brand ahead of his rookie season back in 1992, which, at the time, was the company’s biggest endorsement deal ever.

Reese’s signing with Reebok was the company’s first major Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) deal.

“So many different shoe companies wanted to work with me. But I chose Reebok. What was it about Reebok? One, they don’t have a women’s basketball player [as] a face. So I wanted to be that,” Reese said in a video shared on X.

“Two, Shaq. You know my relationship with Shaq. And three, I like how they’re rebranding everything and they’re letting me be the creator behind everything I want to do. So I’m having my own shoe line coming out, merch with my name on it…Y’all like what I wear, y’all like how I dress, y’all like my style. I wanted to incorporate that into Reebok,” the rising WNBA star added.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: May 9, 2024


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