NEW YORK — It looks like Michael Jordan will have some company in a very exclusive club in one of the world’s biggest footwear, apparel, and sports equipment companies.
On Friday, Kevin Durant confirmed that he’s received a lifetime contract from Nike that will continue a partnership that began Durant’s rookie year in 2007 in Seattle.
The Suns forward has become just the third NBA player in Nike’s history to have a lifetime contract. That’s where the Bulls legend comes in since he is one of the other two to have that kind of deal with the company along with LeBron James.
As he was getting ready to enter the NBA, Jordan signed a five-year, $2.5 million deal with Nike and began a partnership that transformed both over the past three decades. The “Air Jordan” brand is one of the most iconic in the world and helped to grow the six-time NBA champion and five-time MVP into one of the most popular athletes of all time.
Per Centuro Global, Jordan was estimated to have made as much as $1.3 billion as of 2020 during his partnership with the company. The Jordan Brand brought in $5.1 billion in 2022, according to Front Office Sports, which the Hall of Famer gets five percent.
Recently, a movie has been made about the courting of Jordan by Nike back in 1984 called “Air,” which has received praise from a number of people, including WGN-TV film critic Dean Richards.
Durant has 15 signature shoes from Nike and an upcoming 16th was announced earlier in April. The partnership with Nike includes not only footwear and apparel but also the support of the 13-time All-Star and 2014 NBA MVP’s community grassroots basketball initiatives.