NBA Star Zion Williamson Files Amendments in Claim Against South Florida Marketing Company
According to reporting from Forbes Magazine, legal representatives for highly-touted NBA rookie Zion Williamson have filed amendments in their lawsuit against a Miami-area marketing company. Though he has not played a professional game yet, Mr. Williamson is one of the most marketable athletes in the entire country. In July, he signed a $75 million shoe endorsement contract.
At the same time, he is also locked in a dispute with a marketing firm. Earlier this summer, that company, Prime Sports Marketing LLC, filed a $100 million breach of contract claim against the former Duke standout. Below, our Miami commercial litigation attorneys explain the key issues that are at stake in this case.
Prime Sports Marketing Alleges that Zion Williamson Breached a Contract
In June, shortly after the 2019 NBA draft where Zion Williamson was selected with the first overall pick by the New Orleans Pelicans, Prime Sports Marketing filed a $100 million breach of contract lawsuit against the star athlete. The lawsuit was filed in the Miami-Dade County Circuit Court and it pertains to a commercial agreement that Mr. Williamson signed with the firm in late April of this year.
Notably, the lawsuit was filed against both Zion Williamson and his current marketing firm Creative Artists Agency (CAA). In May, representatives for the player notified Prime Sports that their initial agreement was both illegal and invalid. According to his legal team, he signed the deal while he was still an amateur athlete at Duke University — which they argue is forbidden by the North Carolina Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practices Act, and thus, not enforceable.
Counterclaim: Zion Williamson Alleges Predatory Recruitment Tactics
In the additional amendments filed by attorneys for Zion Williamson, his lawyers allege that Prime Sports Marketing LLC acted in an unethical, predatory, and exploitative manner in enticing him to sign the agreement. Specifically, they allege that Mr. Williamson was still actively playing amateur games for Duke University while he was being contacted by Prime Sports Marketing and its President Gina Ford.
Lawsuits related to this case are now currently pending in courts in both South Florida and North Carolina. Though, the core issues at dispute must be resolved under North Carolina state law. As such, it is likely that North Carolina will eventually be deemed the proper venue to handle the claims. In North Carolina, civil procedures require that parties try to mediate these types of contract dispute before litigation commences.
Discuss Your Case With Our South Florida Contact Litigation Attorneys Today
At Pike & Lustig, LLP, our Florida business lawyers have the skills and experience needed to handle all aspects of contract disputes. If you are involved in a commercial dispute, our team can protect your business interests. We provide attentive, sophisticated, effective legal guidance to our clients. For a confidential, no obligation initial review of your contract case, please reach out to our Miami law office or West Palm Beach law office today.