Lawyers for Pelicans' Zion Williamson make new filings in lawsuit against ex-marketing agency

Late on Wednesday, lawyers for New Orleans Pelicans rookie Zion Williamson made new filings in a lawsuit against his former marketing agency. The amendments to the lawsuit allege that Williamson's former agency, Prime Sports Marketing, violated state laws in North Carolina during their recruitment of the Duke star. 

Per the complaint, Prime Sports Marketing began recruiting Williamson while he was still playing his freshman season at Duke. In addition, the suit alleges that the agency was not certified by the National Basketball Players Association. Via ESPN:

The amendments, filed in the U.S. District Court in North Carolina by Williamson's New York-based lawyer Jeffrey Klein on Wednesday, include further details of alleged violations of state laws under North Carolina state sports agents laws by the Florida company, Prime Sports Marketing and its president, Gina Ford. Prime Sports filed a suit in the Florida courts in June shortly after Williamson's filing that seeks $100 million in damages from Williamson and his current representation, Creative Arts Agency, for "breach of contract."

The amended complaint on Williamson's behalf toward Prime Sports include an allegation that Ford and Prime Sports began recruiting Williamson as early as January 2019, when he was still engaged during his freshman basketball season at Duke. Prime Sports and its president Gina Ford were not certified by the National Basketball Players Association or registered in the state of North Carolina, which is at the crux of Williamson's case to enforce termination of his agreement with Prime Sports.

According to court documents, Williamson signed a contract with Prime Sports Marketing on April 20, but decided to end the agreement on May 31 and sign with Creative Artists Agency (CAA) for representation. As a result, Prime Sports Marketing sued Williamson for $100 million for breach of contract. 

Per Williamson's lawyers, the player's original contract with Prime Sports Marketing also failed to contain an acknowledgement that by signing the deal, Williamson would be ending his amateur status. One of Williamson's lawyers told ESPN, "Prime Sports Marketing's actions towards Mr. Williamson blatantly violated the North Carolina statute specifically designed to protect student athletes."

NBA Writer

Jack Maloney lives and writes in Milwaukee, where, like the Bucks, he is trying to own the future. Full Bio

Our Latest Stories