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AND 1 SIGNS BLUE CHIPPERS HUGHES AND LAFRENTZ; MARBURY CUT
Published June 16, 1998
PA-based AND 1 has signed former Univ. of KS F Raef LaFrentz and former St. Louis Univ. F Larry Hughes to endorsement agreements. AND 1 Founder & President Seth Berger: "With other footwear companies cutting back on endorsers, we saw a great opportunity for AND 1 to be more aggressive in gaining greater on-court visibility in the NBA." Both athletes are represented by FAME (AND 1). BRANDWEEK's Terry Lefton reports that while Berger would not disclose terms of the deals, he said the company is paying them "well by this year's standards, but two or three years ago, this kind of money would get you a bottom five first- rounder." Lefton adds that AND 1 is "close" to a deal with former Univ. of MI C Robert Traylor (BRANDWEEK, 6/22 issue). MAR-BURIED: Lefton also reports that T-Wolves G Stephon Marbury leaves AND 1 "after two years as its lead endorser." Lefton: "Expect this thing to get legal soon. Relations with agent Eric Fleisher became strained to the point where AND 1 terminated the deal." AND 1's Berger, on Marbury: "To have so much of your brand wrapped up in something you can't depend on just puts your brand in a very precarious situation." Lefton adds that Nike, which could "creatively pair" Marbury with T-Wolves teammate Kevin Garnett, is "long rumored to be waiting in the wings" for Marbury. Puma "is another possibility" (BRANDWEEK, 6/22 issue).