Odell Beckham Jr. has sued Nike, claiming that the company defrauded him of millions of dollars by preventing the sale of footwear that would have resulted in an extension of his contract.
Attorney Daniel Davillier for 30-year-old Odell Beckham Jr. outlined their grievances with the large sneaker company.
According to TMZ, Odell claimed that when his initial Nike contract expired in 2017, he thought about switching to Adidas since they were willing to pay him a sizable contract.
Odell claimed that Nike utilized their right to match the Adidas agreement because they did not want to lose a star athlete. Odell said that the fine print was different and that the actual terms weren’t the same.
The NFL player stated that the relationship with the shoewear giant started to sour around March 2022, when he was due a payment of about $2.6 million. He highlighted that the way the Nike arrangement was structured made it practically hard for him to trigger very valuable extensions of the deal.
Odell claimed that Nike withheld more than $2 million of the payment without giving any prior notice. He claims that Nike withheld the money because it claimed that he altered his equipment toward the end of the previous season, violating the company’s policies on footwear and gloves.
However, he said that Nike had neglected to provide him with cleats that matched the colors of his new squad, forcing him to make his own modifications.
Odell claimed that Nike had never objected to him customizing gear to meet his “high fashion brand” in the past. He also claimed that Nike created the penalties to coerce him into accepting a less lucrative contract with them.
Odell claims that the small print defrauded him of more than $20 million, and he demands the money back.
In a statement, the Super Bowl champion said;
“Being a Nike Athlete and Brand Icon was a dream I’ve had since being a young boy. I wanted to be the next Michael Jordan, Bo Jackson, LeBron James or Kobe Bryant in the Nike Family. “When Nike exercised its right of first refusal to match the Adidas offer and not only kept me as a Nike Athlete, but also made me one of their Brand Icons – my dream had been fulfilled. “Unfortunately, Nike did not honor its commitments. Throughout our partnership, I have kept my promise and fulfilled my obligations to the brand. I am extremely disappointed that I’ve had to take these measures to ensure Nike fulfills their obligations and promises.“Today, I’m taking a stand not just for me, but to set a precedent for all athletes who have dedicated their life to the sport they love – especially those who don’t have the means to stand up for themselves. We are held responsible for fulfilling our obligations under our contracts, but we also have to hold powerful companies like Nike accountable for honoring their commitments too. “I look forward to resolving this issue and hope we can start a real conversation about protecting athletes and their rights. This happens too often in the sports industry and it’s time for change. “As this is now a legal matter, please refer any questions to my attorney, Daniel Davillier.”