Caitlin Clark: How Much Is Nike Paying the Women's Basketball Star in Record-Breaking Contract Including Her Signature Shoes?

Clark's representatives from Excel Sports Management had discussions with brands such as Adidas, Under Armour, and Puma, as well as Nike.

A drama surrounding Caitlin Clark's next stop in her basketball career ended with the Indiana Fever securing the first pick in the WNBA Draft. However, the situation remained tense regarding her shoe endorsement deal, with top shoe companies vying for the signature of the biggest star in the history of women's basketball.

Clark is finally poised to sign an eight-year contract worth around $28 million, including the possibility of her signature shoe, as reported by the Wall Street Journal. It came after Clark took college women's basketball to unprecedented heights, partly thanks to her popularity as the most prolific scorer in the history of the sport and record-breaking TV viewership.

Making of the Biggest Star

Caitlin Clark
Caitlin Clark X

Caitlin Clark's previous contract with Nike was signed in 2022 and ended after the recent season. Standing at six feet tall, Clark solidified her status not only as the most renowned women's college basketball player but also arguably the most popular college basketball player overall—male or female—during the last season.

According to the Wall Street Journal, negotiations intensified during NBA All-Star weekend in mid-February.

Caitlin Clark
Caitlin Clark Instagram

Clark's representatives from Excel Sports Management had discussions with brands such as Adidas, Under Armour, and Puma, as well as Nike. They said that they were seeking a starting point of a $3 million per year deal.

At that time, Clark had yet to declare for the WNBA Draft.

However, it was evident that she would continue to shine as the brightest star in the sport, whether remaining at the University of Iowa or transitioning to the professional level.

Big Deal

According to the report, some executives believed that Clark would potentially be even more popular if she chose to stay another year at Iowa rather than enter the WNBA. However, her outstanding performance this season solidifies her status as a future star in the WNBA.

Caitlin Clark
Caitlin Clark Instagram

Despite this, Puma withdrew from the negotiations after balking at the $3 million starting point. They already have Breanna Stewart of the New York Liberty on their roster with her own signature shoe.

A Zoom call involving Clark, her representatives, and Adidas, "surprised by how engaged, curious and well-prepared" Clark — who studied marketing at Iowa — was on the call, the Journal said.

Despite efforts from various brands, none could meet Clark's desired starting point of $3 million per year.

Caitlin Clark
Caitlin Clark Instagram

Under Armour included its client, Stephen Curry, in their bid to sign Clark. The offer from Under Armour amounted to $16 million over four years, which included the provision for a signature shoe.

However, Nike emerged as the frontrunner with an offer that surpassed the others. Their proposed eight-year deal is particularly significant as it aligns with Clark's potential Olympic future.

Lasting through the next three Olympic Games—beginning with Paris this summer, followed by Los Angeles in 2028, and Brisbane in 2032—the deal underscores Nike's commitment to Clark's long-term career development.

As of now, the US roster for the upcoming summer Olympics has not been announced.

Caitlin Clark
Caitlin Clark Instagram

Sabrina Ionescu, who also plays for the Liberty, is said to have received a $24 million deal with Nike. However, reports suggest that injuries may hinder her ability to fully capitalize on the entirety of the deal.