Before The 2015 NBA Draft, Under Armour and Foot Locker Go All In On Dallas' Emmanuel Mudiay.
Life is about to change a whole lot for Emmanuel Mudiay this week — so it’s no surprise Under Armour and Foot Locker are looking to cash in.
You remember Mudiay, right? He's the former high school All-American point guard from the embattled Dallas charter school Prime Prep — you know, the guy who committed to SMU only to bail on that commitment for a $1.2 million contract with the Guangdong Hongyuan Southern Tigers of the Chinese Basketball Association amid rumors that he may be deemed academically ineligible by the NCAA.
Nearly a year later, we’re just around the corner from Mudiay finding himself a lottery pick in the 2015 NBA Draft on Thursday night and readying himself for what many of those major brands are hoping is the arrival of a new professional basketball superstar.
How hyped are these businesses on this guy? Well, Under Armour and Foot Locker each just released several new ads featuring the almost-Mustang. Check 'em out.
They're not the only ones buying in. Just this morning, DraftExpress released its 2015 NBA Mock Draft this morning, which has Mudiay being selected No. 7 overall by the Denver Nuggets. That has Denver fans stoked: Yesterday, Around The Horn regular and Denver Post columnist Woody Paige pleaded for the Nuggets to draft Mudiay: “The Nuggets must draft Emmanuel Mudiay on Thursday night. Ta-ra-ra Mudiay! He will be a game-changer, a franchise-shaker in the NBA. ‘Dr. Congo’ was on his jersey front last year in China. He has been affectionately referred to as 'There I Am' and 'EMS”l' (Express Mail Service). He should be called the Nuggets' point guard for the next 10 seasons.”
Yes, things are looking good for Mudiay, but it’s worth noting that, right around the time he jetted off to China he was being touted as the possible No. 1 pick in this draft — or a top three selection. That may still be true today if he didn’t injure his ankle with the Southern Tigers, a speed bump that forced him to sit out most of the season while college freshmen such as D’Angelo Russell of Ohio State, Karl-Anthony Towns of Kentucky and Jahlil Okafor of Duke were dominating in the NCAA.
Either way, Thursday is when Mudiay's next chapter — whatever it may be — officially begins.