The year 2023 has not been too kind to New Orleans Pelicans star Zion Williamson. But just when you thought the 23-year-old had hit rock bottom, the depths he finds himself in continue to know no end, as he and his family now find themselves embroiled in a legal battle over an unpaid loan.
According to the Associated Press, via ESPN, the Pelicans star, his stepfather and his mother “have failed to repay $1.8 million.” of the $2 million loan that California tech company Ankr PBC gave them. Ankr hoped that by embarking on a business relationship with Williamson, the Pelicans wing could serve as a spokesman for the company.
However, Lee Anderson, Zion Williamson’s stepfather, allegedly demanded an upfront payment of $150,000 for the Pelicans star to engage in a business relationship with the company. In addition, Anderson also allegedly asked Ankr for a “bridge loan” so that he could cover some of the family’s investments while Williamson’s sponsor money was suspended due to injury.
Anderson lofted the threat of a failed partnership with Williamson over Ankr’s head, so the company agreed. However, Williamson’s family did not hold up its end of the bargain, the lawsuit states.
The company said it agreed to provide a loan to the Williamson family on the condition that they repay it by August 21, 2022. But Lee Anderson allegedly “asked for a series of extensions,” entering into a forbearance agreement requiring the Williamson family to repay $500,000 by April 25 and the remainder of the loan by July 6 to avoid being sued.