Skip to main content

LeBron James is showing support for his new Nike teammate, Sabrina Ionescu. 

Ionescu, who was the No. 1 pick by the New York Liberty in the WNBA draft on Friday, recently signed an endorsement deal with Nike. James welcomed the former Oregon star to the Nike family. 

James posted an Instagram story with a picture of Ionescu and wrote: “Yes Sir!!! Welcome to the Swoosh family! Congrats #1 pick! Good luck in the Big Apple @sabrina_i.”

Ionescu is the reigning Naismith Women’s College Player of the Year. She returned to school for her senior season, citing unfinished business, delaying her professional career. Her team was expected to make a championship run but the NCAA Tournament was canceled in March because of the COVID-19 pandemic.  

James watched the WNBA draft and tweeted his excitement for the 2020 class to his 45.8 million followers. 

Read More

“Watching @WNBA draft! Lot of women (sic) dreams coming true. Salute and congrats to you all!! #StriveForGreatness” 

Ionescu developed a special friendship with Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna over the last year. After Kobe and Gianna died in a helicopter crash on Jan. 26, Ionescu delivered a touching speech at their public memorial at Staples Center on February 24. 

James said that he would help carry on Bryant’s legacy in an emotional pregame speech in the Lakers' first game after his death. Bryant was a huge advocate for the women’s game, coaching his daughter Gianna's basketball team at the Mamba Sports Academy and hosting a camp for WNBA players there. 

James has also shown a lot of support for the WNBA. 

He recently reacted to a tweet comparing the Pat Summit-era Tennessee players versus the Dawn Staley-era South Carolina players. He debated why the Lady Vols would win that matchup.