Reebok signs 15-year-old hockey phenom to huge endorsement deal

Have you heard of Connor McDavid? If not, don't worry. You will. At just 15 years old, McDavid is the hottest thing in hockey while the NHL remains in self-imposed hibernation. McDavid is currently starring for the Erie Otters of the Ontario Hockey League, and is already among the league's top scorers despite being a minimum of two years younger than all his foes.

15-year-old Erie Otters superstar Connor McDavid, who signed a lucrative sponsorship deal with Reebok — AP
15-year-old Erie Otters superstar Connor McDavid, who signed a lucrative sponsorship deal with Reebok — AP

As covered in great detail by Neate Sager of Buzzing the Net, Prep Rally's brotherly junior hockey blog, McDavid has already scored 17 goals and 37 points in just 32 games. He's already 10 points ahead of all other first-year players in the league's rookie scoring race. Yet none of those goals count as the biggest score of McDavid's first junior hockey season. Instead, that would be the massive promotional contract the forward just agreed to with Reebok/CCM.

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While official terms have yet to be announced, Sports Business Journal reported that the agreement, which will make McDavid the youngest spokesman for the brand, is expected to be similar to the five-year deal then-phenom Sidney Crosby signed with Reebok when he was 17. The full terms of Crosby's first Reebok deal have not been disclosed, but it was announced as a "multi-year, multimillion dollar endorsement deal." That means that if McDavid's deal is similar, he could stand to earn $2 million or more in the coming years.

The connection with Crosby is fitting since McDavid has been called the "next Crosby" by plenty of significant hockey figures … including Crosby himself.

McDavid, was the top overall pick of the last Ontario Hockey League draft, a status which is exceptional in its own right; McDavid was just the third 15-year-old ever allowed to join the OHL.

Put all that hype and the early results together, and it makes sense that Reebok would want to lock up a potential hockey LeBron James while it can.

"We want to align with the best in the world, and we believe Connor McDavid is in that class," Reebok/CCM vice president of global marketing Glen Thornborough told Sports Business Journal. "I won't get into the terms of it, but it would obviously extend into when and if he is in the National Hockey League.

"It is not an everyday occurrence in the industry that a player like Connor comes along. We are not in the habit of signing kids that age, but there are special occurrences and this is one."

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