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Kyrie Irving Signs With Anta

Nearly a year since he was dropped from Nike, Kyrie Irving has officially signed with Anta and was named the company's Chief Creative Officer.

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Irving, and Anta have agreed to a five-year endorsement deal. This comes weeks after Irving was spotted at his basketball camp wearing Anta sneakers and following reports from Brandon Robinson that Irving was considering signing an agreement with Puma or adidas.

The exact specifications on what Irving will be paid and how the deal is structured have yet to be made public. It is being reported that Irving will be able to sign players and bring collaborators on himself, likely similar to how Jordan Brand operates within Nike. He will also “bring a level of manufacturing to the United States,” as stated by Shams Charania, to help Anta kickstart its entry into the U.S. basketball market.

The Swoosh cut ties entirely with Irving, his sharing of anti-semitic sentiments via a documentary co-sign being the final straw after years of toeing the line as a self-proclaimed “free-thinker.” Irving endorsed the documentary Hebrews to Negroes: Wake Up Black America through a tweet and was suspended indefinitely by the Brooklyn Nets. Irving refused to back down for a time but eventually acknowledged the hurt he’d caused and said he didn’t believe everything in the doc.

Controversies have also included his refusal to get vaccinated, which prevented him from playing home games for the Nets for a significant time, and flirtation with flat earth theories.

Anta currently has Golden State Warriors star Klay Thompson and Gordon Hayward of the Charlotte Hornets on the roster. Klay has been the face of the company's basketball division since signing in 2015. With Kyrie, arguably the bigger of the two, joining the brand, Irving will likely take over this role.

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