Philadelphia 76ers franchise big man Joel Embiid has finally ended his foot apparel free agency by signing with Under Armour.
As one of the more subtle offseason story lines for the Philadelphia 76ers, Joel Embiid was one of the best free agents in a non-basketball sense. After wearing Adidas previously, it was announced today that Embiid had officially switched shoe brands and had signed with Under Armour.
The move shouldn’t come as much of a surprise after the center wore Under Armour shoes during training camp and the preseason. According to Nick DePaula of ESPN, Embiid signed an offersheet from Under Armour on Sept. 28, after the Sixers media day. While Adidas had the option to match Embiid’s offer from Under Armour, the company informed Embiid and his representation they wouldn’t do so.
Embiid is expected to become the richest center in the footwear business as a result of the five-year deal. The center provided his thoughts in regards to the stereotypes around big men getting shoe endorsements.
“There’s a stereotype about big men that can’t sell shoes. When I look at myself, I’m not a big man; I’m a guard…I can do everything on the basketball court. You can name it — pass, post up, shoot the ball, bring the ball up, being a playmaker — so I’m excited to break that stereotype. I can’t wait to do so much more with Under Armour.”
It’s great that Embiid has confidence in the brand he can build upon. He will be joining several great athletes in representing the Under Armour brand, including Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry.
The Sixers center will be joining a small group of NBA players that wear Under Armour shoes. According to NBA Shoes DB, that list of players include: Stephen Curry, Kent Bazemore, Jerian Grant, Andrew Harrison, Emmanuel Mudiay, Delon Wright, Pat Connaughton, Raymond Felton, Patty Mills, Will Barton and Seth Curry.
This deal helps build Under Armour’s NBA brand even more with Embiid joining Curry as another legit star to represent the brand. There could be plenty of good things that could come from this for Embiid and hopefully this move will also help increase the Philadelphia 76er popularity in the footwear industry as well. DePaula also noted that Under Armour will assist Philadlephia and Embiid’s native Cameroon with charities, which also has impressed Embiid.