Caitlin Clark ‘getting screwed’ with historic Nike shoe deal: Dave Portnoy

Caitlin Clark’s historic shoe deal isn’t historic enough for Dave Portnoy.

The Barstool Sports founder claimed the Indiana Fever’s No. 1 pick is “getting screwed” with her eight-year, $28 million deal with Nike that includes a signature shoe.

“If people want to complain about Caitlin Clark getting screwed complain about this. 8 year 28 million deal is STEALING,” Portnoy posted Tuesday on X. “8 years 80 million min is her worth and that’s still prob too cheap. I hope she has an early opt out if they don’t pay up when she blows through this deal.”

When an X user responded asking how many men would buy Clark’s shoes and calling the deal an “overpay,” Portnoy doubled down while dissing Phoenix Suns star Devin Booker.

“Men would 100% buy her sneakers. All girls who play hoop will,” Portnoy said. “Devin Booker got 5 years 50 million. Caitlin is 100x the Star and impact.”

Caitlin Clark's Nike deal is worth $28 million.

Caitlin Clark’s Nike deal is worth $28 million.Indianapolis Star-USA TODAY NETWORK
While perhaps Clark made a mistake by not having Portnoy negotiating her sneaker contract, the former Iowa superstar set a record with her Nike pact, as originally reported by the Wall Street Journal.

Nike won a bidding war with its contract, triumphing against the likes of Adidas, Under Armour and Puma for a contract that Clark’s agents said had to be worth at least $3 million per season.

Puma bowed out at that price range, per the WSJ, having already negotiated a contract and shoe with Liberty star Breanna Stewart.

Adidas offered $6 million over four years, which was half of the minimum target, while Under Armour offered $16 million for four years, per the report.

Dave Portnoy said Caitlin Clark is "getting screwed" with her Nike deal.
Dave Portnoy said Caitlin Clark is “getting screwed” with her Nike deal.Getty Images

Here’s everything to know about Caitlin Clark and her surprising WNBA salary

Caitlin Clark, college basketball’s all-time leading scorer and new face of the organization unsurprisingly went No. 1 in the WNBA draft to the Indiana Fever.

She hasn’t even played a game yet, but Clark has already become one of the biggest names in the WNBA.

Her first-round pick helped to drive a 304% increase in viewership for the WNBA draft this week. But the conversation around Clark certainly didn’t stop after she signed for 4-year deal with the Indiana Fever.

Clark will earn $338,056 over four years, per the league’s collective bargaining agreement, with the Indiana Fever.

In comparison, the top pick in the 2023 NBA draft, Victor Wembanyama, landed a $55 million deal.

Clark then signed a $28 million, eight-year contract with Nike, which David Portnoy called “STEALING” on Twitter.

“8 years 80 million min is her worth and that’s still prob too cheap,” Portnoy continued. “Hope she has an early opt out if they don’t pay up when she blows through this deal.”

Despite the relatively low numbers, the deal is the largest sponsorship contract for a female basketball player on record.

Television personality Hoda Kotb was noticeably distraught about the pay gap during the “Today” show Tuesday.

“For somebody who is now the face of women’s basketball, it seemed kind of ridiculous,” Kotb said.

Kotb called it “disturbing” and brought it up multiple times throughout the morning.

Former ESPN journalist and current contributor to The Atlantic Jemele Hill was displeased with the discourse surrounding WNBA salaries and posted a lengthy X post on the subject.

“I’m already annoyed by this conversation because for years, WNBA players have fought for more money. And when they were outspoken, so many of y’all told them to shut up or reminded them how they had no value The NBA has had 50+ years of investment, media coverage, etc. After 27 years, the WNBA will not be the current NBA. So stop comparing them,” Hill wrote on social media.

“Weaponizing this information against WNBA players is another form of misogyny. These women have been dreaming of playing professionally in front of American audiences their whole lives,” Hill continued. “Instead of clowning and reminding them of what they’re not — buy the merchandise, go to the games, and watch the games on television.

The Nike shoes Caitlin Clark wore in the national title game.
The Nike shoes Caitlin Clark wore in the national title game.Getty Images
While that deal offers more in annual average value, Clark chose the highest total with Nike.

Nike’s original offer didn’t include a shoe, but the global heavyweight finally upped its terms to include one, per the WSJ.

Clark and the Fever open their season May 14 on the road against the Connecticut Sun.

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