Alissa Pili Signs With Nike N7 Brand

WHN | Jun 7, 2024

MINNESOTA – Nike announced Friday that Minnesota Lynx rookie Alissa Pili has partnered with Nike as part of their Indigenous-focused…

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MINNESOTA – Nike announced Friday that Minnesota Lynx rookie Alissa Pili has partnered with Nike as part of their Indigenous-focused ‘N7’ brand

The No. 8 overall pick is of Samoan and Iñupiaq descent, both of which are Indigenous groups with ties to Alaska. Pili has always embraced her heritage, even donning a black dress with gold tribal print on draft night, highlighting the Polynesian tribal tattoos on her leg.

Pili has made it a priority to uplift the next generation of Native athletes and has embraced being a role model for Indigenous and Polynesian youth. 

“A lot of Indigenous and Polynesian girls don’t get to see that role model and I’m just so blessed that I could be in a position to be that for them,” Pili said on draft night. “I’m representing them with pride.”

Nike started their Native American division in 2007, collaborating with community and tribal leaders to create footwear specifically for the Native American community called the Nike Air Native N7. The shoe was sold through Native community centers and tribes with proceeds from the sales turned into donations towards youth sports in the communities.

In 2009, the program was expanded to a full N7 collection, available for mass purchase. Nike partnered with Native athletes to design the products and launched its N7 fund intending to continue to support and uplift Indigenous communities across the United States and Canada. 

“I’m so honored to join the Nike Family as an N7 athlete,” Pili said in a statement. “Representation is important to me, and I look forward to making an impact in the league and demonstrating to all the Indigenous and Polynesian girls who love the game that they can reach their dreams.”

Pili joins other exceptional Native athletes including Olympic hammer thrower Janee’ Kassanavoid, Pi‘ikea Kekīhenelehuawewehiikekauʻōnohi Lopes who won 2022 Miss Aloha Hula and Dallas Mavericks guard Kyrie Irving.

Pili is set to meet with members of the local Phoenix Native American and Indigenous communities following the Lynx’s Friday matchup against the Phoenix Mercury. The game will begin at 10 p.m. ET on ION.

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