Mavericks phenom Luka Doncic has emerged as a serious MVP candidate this season, doing so as a sneaker free agent. Doncic, who was recently named SI’s Breakout Player of the Year, saw his two-year deal with Nike expire before the season.
But after weeks of speculation about what company he would sign with, he is "closing in on a lucrative multi-year endorsement deal" with Jordan Brand, according to The Athletic's Tim Cato and Shams Charania. The company announced the deal on Dec. 26.
According to ESPN's Nick DePaula and Tim MacMahon, the deal is expected to be a five-year deal. It will not begin as a signature deal, but Doncic can earn a signature deal through bonus clauses such as winning MVP or Finals MVP. However, he will reportedly likely have some player-exclusive models which he would have design input on.
Earlier this calendar year, Jordan Brand shocked the world and signed Zion Williamson. The brand also signed Celtics’ star Jayson Tatum and rookie Rui Hachimura, who became the first player born in Japan to be drafted. The Air Jordan 34 is also already considered one of the best basketball shoes on the market.
Last Saturday, Doncic suffered a right ankle sprain in the first quarter of Dallas' loss to Miami, but he has already been spotted shooting around before games.
Through 25 games of action, he's averaging 29.3 points, 9.6 rebounds and 8.9 assists per game. He also leads the league with eight triple-doubles this season and recorded 20 straight games with at least 20 points, five rebounds and five assists prior to his injury.
Dallas has won two of its three games without Doncic, defeating the Bucks and 76ers this past week.