The WNBA routine has not been declared but, but on Thursday, the Liberty and the rest of the league unveiled new uniforms. For the New York workforce, it was a different phase on their street to Brooklyn. It is section of a gradual but increasing advertising buzz for the Joe Tsai-owned club as it moves nearer to Opening Evening at (Tsai’s) Barclays Middle.
The move from White Plains to Brooklyn was intended to take place past time, but the pandemic intervened and the Liberty wound up in the “wubble” in Bradenton, Florida. Now, nevertheless, there appears to be nothing that will interfere with Tsai’s plan. Tsai and his spouse, Clara Wu Tsai, purchased the staff from James Dolan and MSG in January 2019, a several months following he agreed to obtain minority stake in the Nets and a couple months in advance of he shut the deal with Mikhail Prokhorov and extra Barclays Centre to his holdings. He mentioned then that as owner that his initially job was to get the Liberty an audience.
The increasing buzz about the shift is also tied into a different Liberty milestone. The franchise will be celebrating its 25th anniversary this spring. The Liberty are just one of 3 original WNBA teams still actively playing in their primary hometowns. Soon after three seasons at the Prudential Heart in Newark through Madison Square Garden’s renovations, then another two in at the Westchester County Heart in White Plains, they’re returning to their roots … and building a significant deal of it.
“First and foremost, it’s an honor to be in the WNBA in general, but to be actively playing in New York — and New York, you know, is like the Mecca of basketball,” Jazmine Jones, a Liberty rookie very last yr, told Sarah Valenzuela of the Daily Information lately. “But at the finish of the working day it’s larger than basketball… It is an honor to be a aspect of one thing exclusive. I’m just blessed and humbled to be right here.”
Jones was aspect of a promotional movie launched at the conclude of previous thirty day period to market the 25th anniversary, shift and brand.
It was narrated by Teresa Weatherspoon, the Liberty icon and Hall of Famer. It’s component of the team’s overarching #OwnTheCrown marketing campaign, the crown a way for the Liberty to command a part as Queens of New York. (Recall the Nets portrayed by themselves as the Kings of New York in their 2019 season ticket promoting campaign.)
The video clip — and marketing campaign — is as substantially a tribute to New York’s enduring power in the course of the pandemic as nicely as a celebration of the city’s girls as it is about basketball. It’s not accidental. The Liberty are embracing not just the WNBA or women’s basketball in their promotions but also ladies which are of training course the core of their enthusiast base.
“We felt that this was a really great chance to rejoice women of all ages who have just been unstoppable,” Shana Stephenson, the Liberty’s VP of Internet marketing, told the News, “and we know that for ourselves, but we’re normally not seen, and regarded on a major wide platform. We imagined that this was the fantastic opportunity to include them in the celebration of the New York Liberty because we realize ourselves as becoming a section of this city.”
It is only one aspect of the marketing campaign. The Liberty have also upped their social media game of late, putting up films and honoring gals inside of and outside the house sporting activities on a almost day-to-day foundation.
On the basketball entrance, the Liberty are reminding persons that Sabrina Ionescu will be leading the staff this year. Viewed as a generational talent when she was drafted very last spring, Ionescu sprained her ankle in the 3rd game of the “wubble,” ending her rookie time. Now wholesome, stage guard is featured on the deal with of this month’s SLAM, described as “the upcoming of New York basketball,” not women’s basketball.
In the SLAM job interview, Ionescu gives praise for the Liberty as an business and seems to be forward to making a lover base in the town.
“I absolutely see the long term in the group that we’re constructing. Super enthusiastic for what is to occur,” she told Camille Buxeda. “It definitely requires a village, it is not gonna happen overnight, it’s not anything that comes uncomplicated. The eyesight of viewing the organization get there and then all of the tough work that it is gonna acquire to get there is genuinely what’s interesting. That grind is why a whole lot of men and women participate in it’s why I perform. That’s genuinely the entertaining aspect.”
The Liberty promoted the post by publishing shots from the SLAM photo shoot.
On the court docket, Tsai’s staff is hoping to make a significant leap from last season’s league-worst 2-20 record to something shut to respectability. In early February, GM Jonathan Kolb built a sequence of trades that introduced two WNBA stars with multiple championships — defensive ace Natasha Howard and shooter Sami Whitcomb — to Brooklyn. Not really as transformative as the Nets trade for James Harden, the offer was very similar in that the Liberty gave up picks — which include the overall No. 1 this calendar year — and young players for marquee players.
That new gear that was unveiled Thursday is finding rave assessments so significantly, with the common seafoam eco-friendly joined by the black that is shared with the Nets. And indeed, the threads are pretty one thing from an aesthetic and a social justice perspective. They will function “Equality” as effectively as “Liberty” on the jersey entrance.
What’s next? In six times, the WNBA Draft will acquire spot and even after their trade for Howard and Whitcomb, they even now have the Nos. 6, 17, 25, 27 and 29 picks. And the marketing marketing campaign will extend to the Draft as properly, with the team planning a digital pre-draft social gathering.
Also, count on an unveiling of the Liberty’s new locker room at Barclays Heart. It is been underneath construction for a while.
Of training course, practically nothing provides in enthusiasts like winning.