Puma Continues Expanding Hoops Roster By Signing Top WNBA Picks
Puma has signed '19 WNBA No. 1 overall pick Jackie Young and No. 4 pick Katie Lou Samuelson to multiyear endorsement deals, and the signings "signal a larger brand strategy to expand its presence in the sport," according to Nick DePaula of ESPN.com. Young and Samuelson "will soon debut" for the Las Vegas Aces and Chicago Sky, respectively, and "headline Puma's upcoming third basketball sneaker." For Young, Dallas Wings G and fellow Puma endorser Skylar Diggins-Smith's presence with the brand over the past few seasons "served as a point of inspiration." Diggins-Smith had signed with Puma as a "lifestyle ambassador" during the summer of '17, before the brand "re-entered the basketball market." Over the past two years with the brand, Diggins-Smith has been "featured in training campaigns, lifestyle photo shoots and Instagram showcases, all before even wearing a Puma basketball shoe in games." Meanwhile, this marks the "second consecutive year that Puma has added a No. 1 overall pick in basketball," as Young joins Suns C Deandre Ayton on the company's roster. When told that a potential deal with Young was "in the works in recent weeks, Ayton excitedly perked up." He then "quickly suggested to Puma reps that the brand do a tandem photo shoot with both No. 1 picks, and also offered to help in any way possible to welcome in the two latest additions to the brand" (ESPN.com, 5/24).