Zion Williamson Allegedly Received Illegal Benefits From Sneaker Brands
Currently locked in a legal battle with his former agent, Zion Williamson has been accused of taking illegal benefits to wear Nike and adidas product, as well as attend Duke University.
Court documents from Williamson's former agent Gina Ford have requested that he admit he was aware his mother Sharonda Sampson and stepfather Lee Anderson ‘demanded and received gifts, money and/or other benefits’ to influence him to attend Duke University on behalf of Nike, with choosing an adidas-sponsored school offered as an alternative. Additionally, Williamson was also served interrogatories asking him to answer under oath whether he received ‘money, benefits, favours or other things of value’ to attend Duke and to use Nike/adidas products.
At present, college athletes in the US are prohibited from receiving money or endorsement from brands.
NEW: Zion Williamson’s former marketing agent has served requests for admission in their lawsuit asking him to admit that he received “money, benefits, favors or other things of value” to attend Duke University and to wear and/or use Nike and Adidas.— Daniel Wallach (@WALLACHLEGAL) May 10, 2020
Wow. That escalated quickly. pic.twitter.com/59gWX5bNKX
After putting together one stellar season with Duke, Williamson became the first overall pick the 2019 NBA Draft, chosen by the New Orleans Pelicans. Following an intense bidding war, it was Nike and Jordan Brand who came out on top, signing Williamson for a reported $75 million over seven years - the most lucrative sneaker deal ever signed by a rookie.
We’ll bring you updates as they come to light.