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#pounditThursday, May 19, 2022

Kyrie Irving could reportedly lose major endorsement deal

Kyrie Irving wearing his Nets uniform

Feb 1, 2020; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) during the second half against the Washington Wizards at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Kyrie Irving has not always made basketball his top priority over the past two seasons, and that could cost the Brooklyn Nets star one of his biggest endorsement deals in the near future.

Irving’s signature shoe deal with Nike is set to expire after the 2022-23 season. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski and Ramona Shelburne reported on Friday that Nike is unlikely to extend Irving to a similar deal due to “uncertainties surrounding his NBA future.”

Irving, who has had his shoe deal with Nike since 2014, has a new edition of his sneaker coming out in the fall. That one could be the last.

A Nike spokesperson told ESPN that the company does not comment on contract speculation and that Irving “remains a Nike athlete.”

Nike will likely still offer some product or products associated with Irving, according to ESPN. It sounds like the apparel juggernaut is simply hesitant to continue with the lucrative deal Irving has had for nearly a decade now.

Irving has a $37 million player option with the Nets for next season. Brooklyn general manager Sean Marks appeared to send a strong message to Irving when discussing the star point guard’s contract situation this week.

Irving was unavailable for much of this past season due to his COVID vaccination status. The year before, he stayed away from the Nets for a while for personal reasons. All of that has created uncertainty about his future, and Nike is probably evaluating the situation for the same reasons the Nets are.

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