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Basketball and Instagram sensation Mikey Williams, just 17, officially signed a multi-year sneaker deal with Puma on Thursday, taking advantage of the NIL rules creeping through the high school ranks.

Williams, a 6-foot-3 leader from the 2023 class, is by far the youngest prospect to sign with Puma and already has a TVN via the company I Got It Auction and a NBA 2K commercial with Jayson Tatum of the Celtics. He also has contracts with the portable fitness tracker LaceClips, Topps Trading Cards and Leaf Trading Cards with more alleged deals going on.

After making his way onto the national stage as a grade 9 student in San Diego, Williams transferred to the basketball-centric Vertical Academy in Charlotte as a second year, although the buzz surrounding him wasn’t just about his skills on the pitch. Only the 13e player classified in current 2023 class according to 247 Sports, it might be the most attractive to business because of its popularity on social media.

Williams has 3.3 million followers on Instagram– six times more than recent NBA No. 1 overall pick Cade Cunningham, according to The Athletic – and 60,000 more followers on Twitter. His Instagram posts — often from him lip sync, to pose Where field chat– typically garner 350,000 likes and 1,000 comments, attracting companies like Puma.

Puma released a statement Thursday saying Williams will wear his Court Rider sneakers and be an integral part of the company’s ‘Not Yet Rated’ branding, a marketing campaign that, according to Puma, “embraces the idea that while Mikey is a top talent, his cap has not determined ”.

Puma was a cutting edge football-centric company in recent years, but joined the basketball genre in 2018. Some of its top hoops customers are LaMelo Ball, Deandre Ayton, RJ Barrett… and now l ‘teenager Williams.

“[Mikey’s] his talent on the pitch and ability to connect with young athletes and fans will help advance hoop culture and inspire the next generation of athletes, ”said Adam Petrick, Global Brand and Marketing Director by Puma. “He has a bright future ahead of him and we are proud to be a part of his journey.

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