Zion Williamson is going to sign a massive sneaker endorsement deal at some point this Summer, it just remains to be seen which brand the No. 1 overall pick will side with.
TMZ reports that Nike is well aware of the threat that PUMA poses and that Nike is “making a hard push to get a deal done with Williamson.” As one source describes, according to TMZ, “He’s the #1 priority.”
Zion Williamson Getting Full-Court Press from Puma, Nike In the Running https://t.co/Dg0MobSWjk
— TMZ Sports (@TMZ_Sports) July 19, 2019
Williamson hasn’t even played a single NBA game to this point, but he could still land a deal north of $100 million due to his popularity.
“There are particular, singular athletes that can move the needle,” former Nike and Adidas executive Sonny Vaccaro said, per TMZ Sports. “Zion Williamson has moved the needle before he even became a professional.”
Zion certainly has more experience with Nike after wearing the company’s apparel in college at Duke, although a blown shoe did cause a knee injury:
Zion's shoe: destroyed ? pic.twitter.com/LqQ2te0Jay
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) February 21, 2019
If Nike strikes out on Zion, everyone will point to that infamous night at Chapel Hill, when Williamson’s sneaker blew all the way up.
Puma is trying to work its way into the conversation after signing last year’s No. 1 pick Deandre Ayton. Adding Williamson to the mix could help the company become extremely popular among the younger audience.
If Puma lands Zion, the ripple effects will be felt in the sneaker game for years to come.