Philadephia 76ers center Joel Embiid has landed himself a lucrative, new deal with sportswear supremos Under Armour, joining the likes of Steph Curry, Patty Mills and Emmanuel Mudiay as NBA athletes signed to the brand, among a few others.
The deal, confirmed by the player himself via underarmour.com after The Athletic's Shams Charania broke the news, will last five years and is expected to make Embiid the highest-paid big man on a shoe deal.
The player had previously donned Adidas, sporting the brand for the first two years of his career. But a huge third season, which saw the Sixers make it to the second round of the NBA Playoffs, has also gotten him a huge endorsement off the backdrop of being the biggest name in sneaker free agency ahead of the upcoming term.
76ers star Joel Embiid has signed a multiyear endorsement contract with Under Armour, a deal making him highest paid big man on shoe deal, per sources. Embiid had been with Adidas.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) October 10, 2018
"Basketball has given me everything, but it has to be bigger than basketball," the player, who showed up to training camp ahead of the season wearing Under Armour sneakers, wrote on the aforementioned website.
"That was the first thing that I said to Under Armour, and they were behind it 100 percent. This isn’t about a shoe deal. I mean, listen... I’m gonna make sure they design some shoes as pretty as I am. Don’t worry about that. We’re gonna take care of that.
"But this is bigger than that. I want to use this partnership to do something real. I want to do something that would make my brother proud."
Curry is reported as having pushed for Embiid's deal and the two stars are now the brand's biggest names in the NBA, with Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson pretty much hauling them along outside of it.
It appears that other brands are making big moves to compete with Nike and Adidas in the NBA. Puma recently closed a major deal with new Golden State Warriors star DeMarcus Cousins, having previously signed the Boston Celtics' Terry Rozier.
And, given that the league has loosened up the rules regarding sneaker colors for next season, we can expect to see a wave of flashy new shoes embellish the hardwood in the 2018-2019 campaign.