Zion Williamson just inked one of the biggest shoe sponsorship deals ever for an NBA rookie, agreeing to a seven-year, $75 million deal with Jordan Brand. And while the entire story of how the No. 1 overall pick actually got to that contract is pretty incredible, what’s even more impressive is how much a pair of game-worn sneakers from Zion’s college days at Duke just sold for.
Look, everyone wants Zion Williamson to become the next polarizing NBA star. They want him to take over the keys to the league from LeBron James in a couple of years. They expect him to light up the Association for the next decade-plus. And, because of that, people will pay big-time money for memorabilia of his just to say they have a small piece of him before his popularity and success (potentially) blows up. Just how much? How about nearly $20,000?
Yep, that’s nearly what someone paid for for a pair of game-worn sneakers during Zion’s fourth regular season game of his college career at Duke, where he dropped 13 points, grabbed 6 rebounds and played 21 minutes against San Diego State, with the final sale price coming to $19,200. That’s according to Action Network’s Darren Rovell, per a tweet from over the weekend.
Guys, what in the hell is wrong with some people? Sure, Zion Williamson is a stud and all, but it’s not as if these shoes have any significant value whatsoever — well, other than that the Pelicans rookie wore them. They aren’t from an NCAA Tournament game. They aren’t from a game where he did something iconic. They didn’t come in the “perfect game” contest against Syracuse in the ACC Tournament after returning from a knee injury. And, oh yeah, they aren’t the shoes that blew up on him during the North Carolina game. Still, these things sold for nearly $20,000. That’s insane.
If there were any questions about Zion Williamson mania and how big the hype really is surrounding him, this is the latest example that it’s a little out of control. These near-$20,000 shoes are, according to Rovell, the only Zion shoes to hit the market, but, still, one has to think there’s a better way to spend $20,000 on memorabilia from the phenom.