Suns star Kevin Durant becomes only the third NBA athlete to agree a lifetime deal with Nike – Basketball Insiders


NBA great Kevin Durant has agreed to a lifetime contract with Nike, joining both Michael Jordan and LeBron James as the third basketball athlete ever to be offered a deal of this magnitude. 

The 34-year-old Phoenix star was first linked to the powerful sponsor in 2007, having released 15 sets of shoes ever since, as No.16 is right around the corner.

“When I first signed with Nike, I couldn’t have dreamed of how far we’d go in this partnership,” the veteran player said in a statement released on Boardroom. “We’ve done amazing work creatively and philanthropically. 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.”

According to information from Nike, the negotiations will keep producing new shoes and other apparel, but with special continuity to other philanthropic collaborations to the community, mostly concentrated on grassroots basketball.

The 13-time All-Star has been playing for the Suns ever since the last trade deadline came to an end in February, having transferred from the Brooklyn Nets. Now the veteran star is paired with Chris Paul, Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton and guided Phoenix to the Western Conference’s semifinals as they recently defeated the Los Angeles Clippers in the first-round of playoffs.

“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,” said Nike executive vice president of global marketing John Slusher. “We look forward to continuing to serve the next generation of athletes together.”

Durant is currently concentrated on overcoming the West’s top-seeded Nuggets this postseason

The Suns administration is hoping Durant won’t be too focused on his latest Nike deal, as the team struggled against Denver in the first game of their conference’s semifinal series. This past Saturday evening, they lost 125-107 and at one point trailed behind a 17-point lead.

The two-time MVP Finals played over 36 minutes and had posted an impressive stat line of 29 points, 14 rebounds, one assist, one steal and three blocks while shooting 12/19 from the field.

After the contest, the forward met with the press and gave praise to the Nuggets for their performance. Check out his full interview in the following video:

“The Nuggets? Surprised? Am I surprised by the Nuggets? Hell no, they’re the number one seed for a reason,” he said. “They got a two-time MVP. They got a deep team. No, I’m not surprised. They can go off and win games. We got our work cut out for us. We looking forward to Game 2, though.

“I know that sounds simple and basic but that’s really what basketball is. So we gotta stick to that.”

Durant knows that Phoenix can play much better after this weekend’s performance.“We definitely can generate more 3s. I think we got some guys open at the 3-point line but we not gonna force any of that, either,” the superstar said. “We gonna try to play the game.”

His coach Monty Williams is in the same page as his star player. “I didn’t think we made the right read out of it,” the trainer said. “When we played these guys before, we’ve done a much better job of making the right read. Now, they crowded the paint a little bit and then they went to some switching with their second unit.

“We’ve always been good with making the right read right away. I thought we were delayed and hesitant in that and I think we’ll be a lot better tomorrow.”

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