An endorsement face-off between Nike and Under Armour ended on Sunday as Kevin Durant agreed to terms of a 10-year deal with the former. The deal is potentially worth as much as $300 million, and was signed on the same day his previous contract with Nike expired.
Under Armour recently put all of its chips on the table when they offered Durant a 10-year deal worth between $265 million and $285 million. It also contained some unique incentives such as Under Armour stocks and a community center built in his mother’s name.
Under Durant’s current contract with Nike, the multi-billion dollar company had the right to match the offer of any other competitor, and it appears that they did just that.
Really, when all else is equal, it is a no-brainer choice to go with Nike, one of the 200 most profitable companies in the world. This is also a win for Jay-Z’s Roc Nation Sports, which proved that it can land deals of this magnitude for its clients.
Durant will become a free agent in 2016, and with all monetary considerations now basically out of the equation, he will have the chance to choose the team with the best chance to win. He will even be in position to take less money to surround himself with the most amount of talent.
This massive windfall of money will undoubtedly influence his free agency decision, and is probably bad news for the Oklahoma City Thunder since a max contract will no longer be his only incentive. Look for Durant to go full-on LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony-mode with his decision, as this probably removes any possibility of an early extension.
Sorry Oklahoma City. It’s not Nike’s fault. Don’t be mad at them. Besides, it’s probably time for you to find out what it’s like to not have one of the best teams in the league every year anyway. Any real fan base should understand the pain as much as they do the triumphs.