Zion Williamson has still NOT signed a shoe deal — despite being the most sought after NBA draft pick since LeBron James — and our sources say it’s all because of Puma. Nike was believed to be the front-runner to sign Zion for months … with legendary former Nike exec Sonny Vaccaro telling us he thinks Zion’s deal could hit the 9-figure mark. And, with Zion rocking Nikes in college, in pre-draft workouts and in some NBA Summer league games … it seemed like it was just a matter of time before Zion signed with the Swoosh.
We’re told Nike is aware of the competition and is making a hard push to get a deal done with Williamson first. As one source puts it, “He’s the #1 priority.” Remember, Zion did have one bad experience with Nike in college … when his Nike PG 2.5s blew out during the opening seconds of the Duke vs. North Carolina game.
Nick DePaula: Cleveland Cavaliers rookie point guard and #5 overall NBA Draft pick Darius Garland has signed a multi-year shoe deal with Nike. pic.twitter.com/lgqrfUalIQ
Kawhi Leonard’s legal battle with Nike just got a lot bigger. After the NBA star filed a lawsuit in June over Nike’s trademark of a claw logo, the Beaverton, Ore.-based company filed a countersuit Wednesday against Leonard. It accused the baller of copyright infringement, fraud within his initial copyright filing and breach of contract.
Nick DePaula: BREAKING: Celtics rookie Carsen Edwards has signed a multi-year shoe & apparel deal with Adidas. The Houston-area native grew up wearing Adidas TMacs. “I was a big fan of Tracy McGrady’s. Whatever shoe he was wearing, I was trying to wear.” — @Cboogie_3
Klay Thompson released his limited edition East Bay Times-Anta collaboration kicks Sunday in honor of his pre-game newspaper reading ritual. The one-of-a-kind KT4’s are filled with newspaper-style print, including clippings of Thompson’s amazing feats on the court in both English and Chinese. Also featured are in-color action photos of him, splashed around the top of the shoe as well as across the outsole on the bottom.