words // Brandon Richard
After a dominant run en route to capturing the NCAA National Championship in April, the starting five of the Kentucky Wildcats basketball team announced their intentions to enter the 2012 NBA Draft. Before they make the leap, the champs have some off-court business to take care of, and forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist is the first of the group to land a sneaker endorsement deal.
Earlier today, Kidd-Gilchrist announced a deal with Nike on his Twitter account, sharing a picture of "Nike Welcomes Michael Kidd-Gilchrist" banners currently hoisted at Nike HQ along with the quote, "Glad to be a part of the Nike Family!" The deal is a continuation of the partnership formed by Kidd-Gilchrist and Nike at the college level. He also wore Jordan Brand at St. Patrick High School.
Kidd-Gilchrist is expected to be a Top 5 pick in June's NBA Draft. In one season at Kentucky, he was named All-SEC First Team, SEC All-Defense, SEC All-Freshman and was a Second Team All-American.
Follow Kidd-Gilchrist @MikeGillie14 on Twitter as he continues his journey to the NBA and prepares for his first season as an official member of the Nike team.