LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Wave Sports + Entertainment (WSE), one of the fastest-growing sports and entertainment companies with more than 110 million followers globally, and the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) today announced a content deal for the league’s 2022 season. For the first-time, WSE and the WNBA will work together to create social-first, short-form programming highlighting the best moments from past and present seasons and will launch new original series that authentically celebrates the league and its players. Programming will be distributed primarily on WSE’s flagship basketball brand BUCKETS that features highlights, coverage, and more of global basketball’s most interesting stories, with additional distribution across WSE’s SWAY, TBH, Break Ankles Daily, and PHENOMS brands.
"BUCKETS is quickly becoming the go-to destination for Gen Z and Millennial basketball fans on social. Our partnership with the WNBA will not only enable us to bring the best on-the-court moments from the league to our audience, but also showcase and promote inspiring, culturally relevant player-centric stories through our talent-led original programming efforts," said Brian Verne, Founder and CEO, WSE. "We look forward to collaborating closely with the WNBA to grow our respective communities, create innovative programming, and feature some of the best athletes in the world."
The first series to debut under this new partnership will be “The BUCKETS Five,” a fast paced and informative weekly show that explores the hot topics and unique culture of the WNBA in 5’s, an homage to the five players of a starting lineup. “The BUCKETS Five” will be hosted by Jordan Ligons, a prolific journalist and sports commentator highly regarded for her coverage of women’s basketball. The premiere episode of “The BUCKETS Five” drops May 5 on the BUCKETS YouTube Channel with clips and cutdowns distributed across BUCKETS’ TikTok and Instagram channels.
Coming later this summer is “The 26,” an exciting and original look at the top 26 players from the upcoming WNBA season from the POV of current and former players. This celebration of the league’s 26-year history will culminate with a live stream featuring the league’s most prominent voices discussing the most impactful 26 players of the season. Ligons will also host “The 26.”
In addition to “The BUCKETS Five” and “The 26,” the companies will look to launch additional series as the season progresses into the WNBA Playoffs presented by Google and the WNBA Finals presented by YouTube TV.
WSE will have access to the league’s highlights, player interviews, archival content, and tentpole events that will be featured throughout WSE’s basketball ecosystem that boasts more than 21 million followers, 84% of which are in the elusive 13-34 demographic. Programming will include robust coverage of the league’s daily news making moments and key storylines, in addition to deeper storytelling focused on the players themselves and their cultural impact off the court.
When not filming on location, content will be filmed at Wave Sports + Entertainment studios in Santa Monica.
In addition to the WNBA, WSE has deals in place with more than 100 rights partners, including the ACC, ATP Tour, Bellator, FIBA Media, ONE Championship, and Top Rank.
WSE will debut its slate of original programming at next week’s NewFronts. WSE will present at IAB’s 2022 NewFronts Thursday, May 5, at 1:05 pm ET. To register to attend WSE’s NewFronts’ presentation, please visit www.IAB.com.
Ligons is repped by Brandon Sharp, AGENDA Management & Production.
About the WNBA
Tipping off its 26th season on May 6, 2022, the WNBA is a bold, progressive basketball league that stands for the power of women. Featuring 12 teams, the W is a unique sports property that combines competition and entertainment with a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and social responsibility. Through its world-class athletes, the in-game fan experience, TV and digital broadcasts, digital and social content and community outreach programs, the league celebrates and elevates the game of basketball and the culture around it.
In 2020, the WNBA and the Women’s National Basketball Players Association (WNBPA) signed a groundbreaking eight-year CBA that charts a new course for women’s basketball – and women’s sports overall – with a focus on increased player compensation, improvements to the player experience, expanded career development opportunities and resources specifically tailored to the female professional athlete. Key elements of the agreement are supported through the league’s partnership platform, WNBA Changemakers, with AT&T, the WNBA’s Marquee Partner and inaugural Changemaker, as well as fellow inaugural Changemakers Deloitte and NIKE, Inc, and subsequent additions Google and U.S. Bank. During the 2020 season, the WNBA and WNBPA launched the WNBA Justice Movement forming the Social Justice Council with the mission of being a driving force of necessary change and continuing conversations about race and voting rights, among other important societal issues.
For more information, visit WNBA.com.
About Wave Sports + Entertainment
Founded in 2017, Wave Sports + Entertainment is a world class sports and entertainment company serving modern day fans via content, products, and experiences. We obsess over sports, from the mainstream to more, bringing superfans the coverage, culture, commentary, and community they crave. With over 110 million highly-engaged global followers and a reach of over 500 million sports fans monthly, we’ve tapped into something incredibly powerful in record time.
Digital platforms love us. We are a top sports partner to Snap, TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. We’ve earned bragging rights by creating some of the most popular sports media brands available on digital platforms today, including BUCKETS, FTBL, GYM HEROES, HAYMAKERS, and JUKES. No matter the sport, we’ve got fans covered with highlights, memes, takes, commentary, analysis, off-field culture, and stories on the players and movements that are shaping the world of sports.
To see our media brands in action, please go to www.wave.tv.