Deebo Samuel and Lindsey Horan among the first sports investors in Cheribundi

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Deebo Samuel was the swiss army knife of the San Francisco 49ers last season. The star receiver had 77 catches for 1,405 yards and six touchdowns, while rushing 59 times for 365 yards and eight scores. He was selected to his first Pro Bowl and received first-team All-Pro honors while setting an NFL single-season record for touchdowns rushed by a receiver as the Niners qualified for the game of NFC Championship.

Knowing he needs to be at the top of his game as well as recovered and ready for the next one, Samuel has a daily routine that involves drinking Cheribundi.

First introduced to the tart cherry juice company while at the University of South Carolina, Samuel says he drinks it every day, doubling down on Mondays and Tuesdays after playing on the weekends. end. Not only is he a regular user, but now Samuel is an investor in the company.

Lindsey Horan (USWNT/Lyon), Tyrese Haliburton (Indiana Pacers), Michaela Onyenwere (New York Liberty) and Samuel were announced today as the brand’s first-ever athlete investors. The terms of their investment were not disclosed.

“For me it was the perfect fit because of how it helps with recovery and how quickly I need to be available,” says Samuel. “I’m a type that takes a lot of hits on Sundays, so I had to find something that actually works, keeps my body in shape and keeps me up to speed. It’s definitely part of my routine.

Rich in a variety of nutrients, including vitamins A and C as well as manganese, potassium and antioxidants, studies have shown that tart cherries can positively impact sleep, boost immunity and fight pain muscles and inflammation.

Founded in 2004, Cheribundi raised $15 million in a Series B funding round in November 2020 led by Emil Capital Partners. Samuel, Horan, Haliburton and Onyen have not only joined as investors, but will also be ambassadors for the company, which works with more than 350 college and professional partners.

The investment comes during a turbulent offseason for Samuel, who is in the midst of contract negotiations with the 49ers as he heads into the final year of his four-year, $7.69 million rookie deal. Samuel can be an unrestricted free agent in 2023.

According to ESPN, Samuel, AJ Brown (Tennessee Titans) and Terry McLaurin (Washington Commanders) will skip fieldwork during their respective teams’ offseason programs in hopes of securing lengthy deals after watching the market explode at their position.

Tyreek Hill became the highest-paid receiver, not quarterback, in NFL history when he signed a four-year, $120 million ($30 million AAV) extension with the Miami Dolphins after been traded from Kansas City. Davante Adams left Green Bay to sign a five-year, $141.25 million contract with the Las Vegas Raiders, while Stefon Diggs locked in a four-year extension with the Buffalo Bills for $104 million.

Samuel said he received death threats and racist messages after he removed the 49ers from his social media earlier this month. Brown also faced unnecessary scrutiny, saying he was called a “diva” and a “bad teammate” during his contract negotiations.

“It comes from being an athlete. Not everyone will be on your side,” says Samuel. “…Right now we’re just focusing on getting my body working properly, preparing for the season and hopefully things will fall into place.”

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