It’s official. James Harden is signing with Adidas for a whopping $200 million.
Nike, Harden’s former athletic and sneaker brand, reportedly told Harden’s camp that they would not match Adidas’ considerable offer. Harden will now be under Adidas for the next 13 years.
The deal will reportedly include a signature shoe as well as an assuredly beard-friendly Harden apparel line. Under Nike, Harden had neither (although he was the face most associated with the Nike Hyperchase).
Adidas was pretty pleased with the deal:
“We’re a brand of creators and James embodies that more than any athlete in the game. His addition to the Adidas basketball family is a game changer,” said Chris Grancio, Adidas global basketball general manager, in a statement. “This partnership gives him the opportunity to achieve his goals and express himself in a totally new way as a creator. He’s already one of the most recognizable sports figures because of his game, his look, his hunger to win and his style on the off the court. His ceiling is far from reached, which tells you the future for him and our brand looks incredible.”
As for Nike, the sneaker giant will likely just go about its business. Last year, Nike’s endorsers ran circles around the brand’s competition in terms of sales and James Harden probably won’t upset the (im)balance of power that much.
Harden will officially be mandated to deck himself out in stripes starting on October 1st of 2015. To think, only yesterday he was rocking his Nike Hyperchases at the TEAM USA mini-camp in Las Vegas.
Creators Never Follow. @JHarden13 – #teamadidas 10.1.15
— adidas Basketball (@adidasHoops) August 13, 2015