April 28, 2023 (Reuters) – Phoenix Suns’ Kevin Durant has signed a ‘lifetime contract’ with sportswear giant Nike, the NBA star said on Friday, following in the footsteps of greats Michael Jordan and LeBron James as the only basketball players to have lifetime deals.
Durant, 34, has been with Nike since he made his NBA debut in 2007 — the season he won the Rookie of the Year award — and has released 15 different pairs of basketball sneakers.
“When I first signed with Nike, I couldn’t have dreamed of how far we’d go in this partnership. We’ve done amazing work creatively and philanthropically,” Durant, a twice NBA champion and 13-times All Star, said in a statement via Boardroom.
“We’ve traveled the world together and built a business that will now last forever. I’m excited for the future and honored to be in rare company with this deal.”
Nike has supported Durant’s involvement in grassroots basketball by helping refurbish courts in communities across the world through the Durant Family Foundation.
“As one of the best basketball players in the world, Kevin Durant has been an important part of the Nike family for the past 16 years,” Nike’s executive vice president of global sports marketing John Slusher said.
“We look forward to continuing to serve the next generation of athletes together.”
Durant’s Suns are through to the Western Conference semi-finals where they will play the Denver Nuggets.
(Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Ken Ferris)