Early this morning (July 12), Kyrie Irving took to his Instagram Stories to reveal a new partnership with Chinese sportswear company ANTA. According to journalist Shams Charania, the shoe endorsement deal with the international brand will run for five years and includes the “unique position” of chief creative officer. All of the terms were said to have been negotiated through Irving’s management entity A11Even.
As previously reported by REVOLT, Nike cut ties with Irving in December 2022 following allegations of antisemitism over a controversial book that he shared on social media. The subsequent dissension also led to the breakdown of his relationship with the Brooklyn Nets, which triggered his move to the Dallas Mavericks back in February. Irving has since apologized to the Jewish community. “To all Jewish families and communities that are hurt and affected from my post, I am deeply sorry to have caused you pain, and I apologize,” his Instagram message said at the time. “I initially reacted out of emotion to being unjustly labeled antisemitic, instead of focusing on the healing process of my Jewish brothers and sisters that were hurt from the hateful remarks made in the documentary.”
The news comes on the heels of Irving’s extention with the Mavericks, which is confirmed for three years and $126 million (per NBA). Team owner Mark Cuban explained the organization’s decision to keep the NBA champion in an interview with The Dallas Morning News.
“I think Kyrie’s just misunderstood, you know,” Cuban stated. “Everybody sees all the noise and everything around him, but when you actually talk to him, I like him. You know, he’s just, he’s open, he’s smart. You know, he’s always looking to learn things and to me, you know, he’s an interesting guy that’s just misunderstood… [Jason] Kidd and I made the effort to really get to know him.”