Jordan Brand has signed New Orleans Pelicans star Zion Williamson to his first professional sneaker endorsement.
The hype around Zion Williamson’s sneaker contract was matched only by the response to the New Orleans Pelicans winning the NBA Draft Lottery. Williamson has now officially signed with Jordan Brand. The deal is reportedly worth $75 million over seven years.
February 20th, 2019 was probably one of the most hyped NCAA Men’s Basketball games of all time between rivals UNC and Duke. And not even a minute into the game, one of the worst-case scenarios came to fruition: Zion Williamson blew through his Nike PG 2.5 shoes.
The media and Twitter circus began: Zion should sit out for the rest of the season! Nike just blew their chances at signing him! Nike will have to pay a fortune to get his shoe deal! Who will Zion choose as his sneaker brand?!?
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Zion did keep to his Nikes when he did ultimately choose to return to Duke as they made their March Madness push. But the question still remained: Who would win the Zion Williamson shoe sweepstakes?
Being heralded as probably the best overall prospect since LeBron James in talent AND marketability, the branding of Zion was just as important to dissect just as much as the basketball talent. Showing a cool, laid back, family and basketball-loving demeanor, most were convinced that no matter where Zion Williamson chose to sign his shoe deal, they would be great and reflect the young generational talent that he is.
With the still presumed front-runner, Nike, having athletes like LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant and Paul George the allure was always there. Nike is Nike for a reason after all.
Adidas have a young star in Donovan Mitchell who just released his Spiderman themed shoes and superstars in James Harden and Damian Lillard. Zion Williamson could have been the next big thing for the 3 Stripes even playing for the small-market New Orleans Pelicans.
Steph Curry and Joel Embiid are the biggest names on Under Armour’s shortlist of NBA players. Zion could have been the next best thing since Curry to sign. New Balance and Puma are just starting to get back into the basketball shoe world.
Kawhi Leonard is the sole king of New Balance while Puma has notably Boogie Cousins, Deandre Ayton, and Marvin Bagley. Any of these would have been good spots to claim the branding rights to Zion Williamson.
But July, 23rd, 2019 the sweepstakes winner was announced. Zion Williamson, via his Twitter account, that he has signed with the GOAT himself Brand Jordan. In a surprise to just about everyone, the Jumpman has won the rights for Zion Williamson’s shoe deal and branding.
Join the likes of former MVP and triple-double king Russel Westbrook, former New Orleans Hornets star Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony, Jimmy Butler, Blake Griffin, and young star Jayson Tatum.
Joining Brand Jordan will almost definitely push Zion as the face of the Jumpman or just behind Westbrook as the face. Now that we know who Zion’s shoes will be coming from, we are now in the wait for the first signature shoe from Jordan and Zion and with how successful Westbrook has been with his ‘Why Not’ series we should be excited for what is in store.
Now that Brand Jordan has expanded to the NCAA ranks like Jordan’s alma mater UNC, Oklahoma, Michigan, and Florida to Ligue 1’s Paris Saint-Germain F.C, and the Jordan’s Charlotte Hornets. The future is extremely bright for Brand Jordan, Zion Williamson, and the New Orleans Pelicans with everything Williamson looks to represent for all parties involved.
Now we just have to wait for the shoe to release and for Zion to make his New Orleans Pelicans debut and watch the fireworks set off.