I vividly remember being in awe of this new league, the players, and the game I loved so much. Somewhere in between bites of my pizza Lunchable, during a commercial break of my beloved Rugrats, I realized just how badly I wanted to be like these women when I grew up. The next thing I knew, I was out in the driveway pretending to be Cynthia Cooper until the street lights came on.
I speak for many when I appreciate the history of the league and how far it has come. With all the hype headed into the start of the 2018 season and the Watch Me Work Era, lets take a look back at some of the most iconic WNBA commercials of the 90s.
Bud Light: 1996
"Nobody Dunks in My House"
Anheuser-Busch was one of the original four corporate sponsors of the league when it began in 1996. The other three were Lee Apparel, Champion and Spalding.
Bud Light: 1997
"Ya'll Play Like Girls"
Correct me if I'm wrong, but this has to be hands down, one of the most iconic women's basketball commercials of all time. There is nothing more to say.
"I Make a Living Playing Basketball"
This full one minute long spot was unusual for its time and one of the longest WNBA commercials we've seen in that era. Reebok became the official outfitter of the WNBA in 1998.
"Rebecca Lobo Not Included"
I remember getting this Barbie for Christmas one year. The mechanical arm snapped back to a full 360 degree rotation. Needless to say, her jump shot was, like, actually broke.
The fictional 70s funk band was used as an ad campaign nearly two years for ESPN. "Monday Night" was the most commonly aired theme, but occasionally they would air the band playing different songs to highlight and promote specific games. If you get a chance, look up "Box Out" and "Lovely, Lovely Comet." The band performed at halftime of the 1998 WNBA Finals and even released an album.
This six-part series ran for Cynthia Cooper, Lisa Leslie and Sheryl Swoopes. The league had been around for three years and the popularity of these three greats was at an all time high. The lead rascal, Kyla Pratt, would go on to star in Love and Basketball a shortly after these aired. I vote Nike brings this series back with the same actresses.
VOTE: Which 90’s WNBA Commercial is Your Favorite?