Gila River Resorts & Casinos (GRRC) and Phoenix Suns starter Jae Crowder have formed a unique partnership in which Crowder will serve as a brand ambassador for the growing gaming enterprise. Owned and operated by the Gila River Indian Community, Gila River Resorts & Casinos owns three popular locations - Wild Horse Pass, Lone Butte, Vee Quiva - and a fourth casino, Santan Mountain, is set to open later this year.
Crowder is the first professional athlete to engage in an endorsement deal with GRRC. “As Arizona’s Official Sports Headquarters, GRRC was attracted to his fearless competitive nature and fierce swagger which is the epitome of Gila River’s “You Do You” mantra. The gaming enterprise also aligns with his winning spirit which is reflective of Gila River’s winning experience for guests,” the company stated.
"Jaw Crowder is a bossman, and we are honored to have him as our first-ever brand icon," said Dominic Orozco, president, and Chief Marketing Officer at Gila River Resorts & Casinos. "Gila River is celebrating its new resorts designation in a big way with Jae. His talent, drive, and vision with his business manager, Josh Mason, is unmatched. We are excited to welcome Jae as our new teammate to the Gila River family."
Crowder has helped the Phoenix Suns reach the NBA playoffs for the last two seasons. In addition to being a star athlete, he is big on giving back to the community and is also a budding entrepreneur. His lifestyle clothing brand Bossmann is an expression of his personality to unapologetically be yourself which is complementary to Gila River’s mantra, “You Do You.”
To kick off the partnership, Crowder will host the Summer Oasis Pool Party at Gila River Resorts & Casinos - Wild Horse Pass in Chandler. This exclusive concert series will feature celebrity DJs on the last Saturday of each month from May through September at the resort’s new Oasis Pool.
"I have a vision of growing with Gila River as we have a lot of things in common," Crowder stated. "Being an athlete at the highest level with one of the best teams in the NBA, it is important to grow my local relationships with people whom I am comfortable with and believe in."
This announcement follows recent similar deals in the gambling industry. This week, MaximBet has teamed up with MLB’s Charlie Blackmon for the first-ever partnership between an active baseball player and a sports betting brand. Also, FanDuel Group and seven division boxing champion, Amanda Serrano, announced a new partnership, designating the online sportsbook as the exclusive sports gaming partner of the Puerto Rican athlete, marking the first-ever professional boxer to partner with FanDuel.
Back in March, sports betting and iGaming operator BetMGM announced it has signed Connor McDavid, the National Hockey League's MVP, as its newest brand ambassador, thus becoming the company's first active professional athlete from the four major sports to be given that title.