It was reported yesterday that Nike has signed NBA superstar, Lebron James, to a lifetime deal even after he finished playing basketball. The terms of the Nike was not disclosed by Nike, but knowing that the Lebron James line of shoes sold $340 million in 2015 so far, we can safely say it was really really lucrative.
Lebron initially signed with Nike out of high school for $90 million in 2003 and it has paid dividends for Nike, but the question they should be asking themselves is “Have they made a mistake by signing Lebron James to a lifetime deal?” The only other person that has a pretty lifetime relationship with Nike is Michael Jordan and his sneakers are still selling really well.
The only problem with Lebron James is that he is still young and has a potential back problem even though he has three to five years left in him of being a dominant player in the league. If his back problem becomes an issue where he can’t play anymore, how will his status play out in the marketplace.
While Michael Jordan has six rings and is considered to be the best that has ever played the game, Lebron James has only two rings and although a superstar, he does not command the same respect as Jordan for now.
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Did Nike just make a mistake in signing Lebron James to a lifetime deal?