Once again attorney Michael Avenatti is alleging that Nike executives conducted illegal payments to Zion Williamson and other players. On March 25th, he was arrested by federal prosecutors for trying to extort Nike. He had threatened Nike for holding a press conference whereby he would reveal improper activities Nike had with high school and college programs.
According to ESPN’s Mark Schlabach, Avenatti has hired a legal team for the extortion case. He is seeking the charges against him to be dismissed on the grounds of vindictive and selective prosecution. His team filed a motion in U.S. District Court in New York on Wednesday.
The motion states that Avenattis has evidence that shows that Nike executives approved the payments. In previous years, Adidas has been in the center of basketball scandal. Avenatti now says that Nike has engaged in a similar scandal.
Avennatti claims that his evidence will show that Nike employees were willing to pay $35,000 to Zion Williamson, $20,000 for Romeo and $15,000 to another player.
Avenatti had also accused Nike of making payments to Williamson’s mother who ended up being No.1 overall pick in the NBA Draft.