With LaMelo Ball’s hype growing by the day, several shoe companies have kept an eye on the 18-year-old. His choice to join the National Basketball League was met with mixed reviews at the time, but early signs indicate that it might work out for the best. LaMelo’s performances for the Illawarra Hawks have also caught the attention of scouts, who now consider him a potential No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, as previously reported by The Inquisitr.
LaMelo has been among the faces of the Big Baller Brand, thanks to his very own signature shoe. The family-owned business has been on an unofficial hiatus since April of this year. As the site remains under construction for the time being, many companies have taken notice of LaMelo’s availability.
According to TMZ, Nike has shown “serious interest” in signing LaMelo to a deal. Having been on Nike’s radar for the past two years, the report adds that LaMelo is being “actively” scouted during his stint with the Hawks. While he has yet to be locked up by the brand, Nike has kept tabs on LaMelo since he was a member of Chino Hills High School. Their interest may have increased now that the guard is being touted as a top lottery pick.
Given LaMelo’s decision to turn pro, he is already eligible to sign an endorsement contract. As his popularity continues to surge, many footwear giants are expected to recruit him to a sneaker deal. His older brother Lonzo Ball has firsthand experience of handling the pressure that comes with being a top draft pick and hopes that LaMelo will take control of his destiny.
“For him, I tell him all of the time, ‘It’s your decision. You’re going to have a chance to go talk to Adidas. Go talk to Nike. Go talk to Puma, talk to everybody. Take every meeting and whoever wants you the most, go with them.’ I told him, make sure you take control of your career now. Don’t wait like I did,” said Lonzo to ESPN‘s Adrian Wojnarowski during an appearance on The Woj Pod.
LaMelo may have learned from Lonzo’s early mistakes, who passed on a lucrative sneaker contract to be at the forefront of the Big Baller Brand. In recent games, LaMelo has been spotted wearing Nike sneakers, which indicates that the interest is certainly mutual. Currently ranked as a top prospect in the upcoming 2020 NBA Draft, it’s no wonder that Nike wants to capitalize on the buzz surrounding LaMelo, who has 4.9 million followers on Instagram.