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New Affidavit Claims Zion Williamson was Paid $400K Prior to Freshman Season at Duke

There’s new evidence in Zion Williamson’s legal battle that may be the most eye-opening to date.

In the federal case between the New Orleans Pelicans star and his former marketing agent, Gina Ford, the latter is bringing new evidence to the table. Defendants filed a 38-page affidavit that alleges Zion and his stepfather accepted $400,000 in exchange for exclusive marketing rights with a Canadian company called Maximum Management Group. Filed in the affidavit is the contract with Zion’s signature from Oct. 2018, a month before his Duke basketball career began.


The evidence appears to be damning, but it may be too late. Daniel Wallach, the legal analyst that’s been on the frontlines throughout the entire case, puts it plainly — Gina Ford’s chance to submit direct evidence in this case has likely already passed.

Even though the procedural manner of this case may prohibit Zion from ever answering questions about the contract in court, it’s not stopping reporters from pressing Zion and Coach K on the matter.

Article written by Nick Roush

"Look upon the doughnut, and not upon the hole." @RoushKSR

38 Comments for New Affidavit Claims Zion Williamson was Paid $400K Prior to Freshman Season at Duke

  1. Realme
    2:12 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    It’s almost too bad he didn’t win them a championship to vacate.

    • Bluehender
      2:24 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      LOL..I like it..

  2. 2andToodleLoo
    2:13 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    Let me know when sports reporters make a big deal about this. Yeah they won’t. They’ll look away.

  3. Lip Man 1
    2:15 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    It is amazing how Duke keeps dodging things because of legal technicalities.

  4. ClutchCargo
    2:15 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    Emmert: “There is nothing we can do, due to a technicality: the word “Management” is misspelled on the signature page.”

    • SuperTroy18
      2:47 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      Emmert: “Due to our ‘Duke Provision’, the statute of limitations concerning any rules being broken by Duke is only 20 minutes or so after the malicious act has taken place.”

    • chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door
      5:14 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      Or Zyon misspelled his own name.

    • ibescootch
      11:55 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      “and shell and shell” in the paragraph as well. Really weird wording for a legal document. Like a PDF was scanned in and converted to text, and then saved as a PDF again and reformatted, and then scanned in again, which could lead to pixel degradation and letters being formatted incorrectly. Just a guess.

      But even then, you’d expect a little higher quality from a professional organization signing a major athlete to a contract, shady or not.

  5. zoupman
    2:25 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    For reasons unknown to, the NCAA looks the other way when it comes to Duke. Just like the KHSAA does when it comes to Trinity.
    Did you really win, if you cheated?

    • Fitz
      2:57 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      How specifically does Trinity “cheat?” And what evidence do you have to make that can other than they dominate KHSAA football for last 30 years. Yes, they do provide financial aid to students whose families can demonstrate need and the student has the ability to succeed in the classroom; and some of them are football players. But, that’s not cheating. Besides, the student is getting the best education in the state of Kentucky.

    • zoupman
      6:45 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      They cheat by recruiting hard and giving excessive benefits. Both of which are against the rules. The best education comment is such a joke, I’ll leave you with it.

    • Fitz
      7:38 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      Are you saying Trinity, and I would add other private schools, do not provide a better education than public schools in Louisville? What “extra benefits” other than the financial aid I mentioned. Public schools dont provide financial aid because the education is paid for by taxes, which is not the case with Trinity or other private schools. If you want to say Trinity, or any private school had a recruiting advantage because they are not limited like public schools to students from their district, then I agree – Trinity does have a competitive advantage over their public school opponents. But, that’s not cheating -just the way it is. Now I’m really going to piss you off – GO ROCKs!

      Fitz 1957 first Trinity graduating class and co-captain of the first Trinity football team

    • satcheluk
      9:33 am July 12, 2020 Permalink

      Thou doth protest too much!

  6. peaches76
    2:25 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    Can you imagine the national attention this would be getting if Zion had come to Kentucky?

    • NCats
      3:07 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      This is why Zion didn’t come to Kentucky! He was supposedly between Clemson and UK.

  7. Han
    2:35 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    Strict liability means the NCAA should immediately declare him retroactively ineligible if he doesn’t meet with them. Happened to Rose with less evidence.

    Somehow, I doubt that happens.

    • meeksfor3
      3:22 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      But it’s the NCAA and they make up the rules as they go according to the perpetrator.

  8. friendsofcoal
    2:52 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    Duke is the same as most liberal politicians….they can get by with whatever! LMAO

  9. Bluebloodtoo
    2:54 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    That last sentence is probably the reason it was filled. Threats are only effective for so long. Eventually you have to show some proof.

  10. BobbyBlue
    2:54 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    As long as the corrupt Mark Emmert heads up the dictatorship known as the NCAA, and the media ptotects Shitshevski in the same way they did for John Wooden there will never be any justice from the NCAA.
    Emmerts hatred of Calipari has sidetracked the eligibility for Sarr.
    As soon as it is obvious there is not going to be a basketball season this year, and only then,he will suddenly let the committee grant Sarr’s eligibility.
    Had Sarr chosen Puke ,he would have been eligible before the end of May !
    If Zion had come to Ky than Ky would already have the death penalty.

  11. Racerr11
    3:29 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    Is anybody surprised that Puke was paying players for a long time. Matt Jones Don Gullett was not a secondary pitcher for the Reds during there best years , he was a starter and the Ace. Matt you can’t just say things and be so far off base.

    • mashburnfan1
      3:49 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      You people need to read, he got money from a marketing group who was hoping to have rights to making tons of money marketing Zion. Nothing to do with any college paying him to go there. May have made him ineligible in eyes of NCAA but no evidence any school or coach paid for his services. Good golly you people make a story totally different from facts

    • 4everUKBlue
      3:59 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      “Good golly you people make a story totally different from facts”. That statement makes me believe Nick stole this story from mashbum, there is no one more guilty of making a story totally different from facts.

  12. Headhurts
    3:35 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    If Zion got 400g’s Reddish & Barrett got at least 50g’s ea, which is why Cal takes shots at K cause he knows how they are desperate to keep up in recruiting so they pay guys like many teams do we found out through the FBI scandal.

  13. bigcat68
    3:46 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    BB you are correct about UK getting the death penalty if Zion has came here. Glad he didn’t. I think everyone with even half a brain now knows and forever knows…..Coach K is a cheater. Period.

    • mashburnfan1
      3:52 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      Yea he has had wins vacated at his two previous coaching jobs. Nothing but a cheater. Oh wait that is Cal not K. Maybe we can get that arse whoppin removed from the record, of course like Cal I already pretended we won the game months ago.

    • 4everUKBlue
      4:03 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      And there is a perfect example of how mashbum uses partial truth to fit his narrative. Yes Cal had wins vacated in spite of there NEVER being any evidence linking Cal directly in either case. Meanwhile K has been caught red handed and suffered zero consequences. Please ask me to cite instances with links to back that up mashbum, please.

  14. chris43
    3:50 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    Hmmmmm $400k….Duke….Coach K…..nothing to see move along!

    Bought player a $1.50 street vendor hotdog along with his own as they were walking down the street…….UK……Coach Cal……BAN HAMMER!

    • mashburnfan1
      3:56 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      Again where does it say any coach or college paid for Zion. You all are just reading the title which was done to make you think dUKe paid. He was simply paid for marketing rights prior to going to college. A firm tried to get exclusive rights to make tons of money later on Zion through marketing. Try reading something without blue glasses on.

    • friendsofcoal
      11:50 am July 10, 2020 Permalink

      If you think for one second that Duke and Coach K didn’t know about this money then you need to get your head out of your ass. Do you honestly think he was down to Clemson and UK and then out of nowhere he picks Duke? Come on man, all schools and coaches have done it so don’t pretend that Coach K is Jesus himself. He was paid to attend Duke plain and simple and I could care less.

    • 4everUKBlue
      4:05 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

      And what about the mansion Zion’s parents came into suddenly? Or what about Marvin Bagley II’s sudden income change? Just to name two….

    • UKBigBlueForever
      2:36 am July 10, 2020 Permalink

      Me and you agree when trashburnfan1 comments. At least we have something we agree on lol.

  15. gwhittle
    4:44 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    Can’t the ncaa still accept this as evidence?

  16. gwhittle
    4:44 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    If they were to open their investigation

  17. Lip Man 1
    5:36 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    Mash: It doesn’t matter if a Duke coach or booster paid him. If he took 400,000 dollars he is ineligible. All Duke wins need to be vacated at least and an investigation to follow to prove that Duke did not know he took money.

    If it is proven they knew then further penalties would need to be issued.

    • UKBigBlueForever
      2:37 am July 10, 2020 Permalink

      ^^ this

  18. ricko52
    8:02 pm July 9, 2020 Permalink

    NCAA could have a video of coach K handing the check to Zion and they still would not do anything,when they turned a blind eye to NC that should tell you what’s going to NOT happen,Duke and NC are free to do whatever they want!

  19. wesmorgan1
    6:04 pm July 10, 2020 Permalink

    Oh, I suspect that if we hear anything from the NCAA, it will wind up echoing the comments they made about Corey Maggette all those years ago – Zion “couldn’t have known” that taking money would void his amateur status, and Duke had “no reason to know” that Zion took any money…so we’re going to slap Appalachian State with 2 years’ probation.