Nike Just Gave LeBron James Cash for Life

Nike Just Gave LeBron James Cash for Life

Just call him King Swoosh from here on out.

Published December 7, 2015

LeBron James and Nike have each other for life.

On Monday afternoon, the Swoosh announced that it signed the NBA superstar to a lifetime deal in what a source told ESPN is the largest single athlete guarantee in Nike history.

"We can confirm that we have agreed to a lifetime relationship with LeBron that provides significant value to our business, brand and shareholders," Nike said in a statement to ESPN. "We have already built a strong LeBron business over the past 12 years, and we see the potential for this to continue to grow throughout his playing career and beyond."

Although the exact amount of the deal hasn't been disclosed, a source told ESPN that it easily trumps the 10-year, $300 million contract Nike gave Kevin Durant last year. It's also believed to be the first lifetime deal that Nike has ever given out.

"LeBron and I have been in love and obsessed with Nike since we were kids," James's business partner, Maverick Carter of LRMR, told ESPN. "Having built a totally innovative, global business with them has truly been a dream come true. We are so excited to be taking the business to an entirely new level. For LeBron, he's thrilled to know he's a Nike guy for life."

Aside from Michael Jordan, whose Air Jordan brand rakes in $2.2 billion in annual sales, King James figures to be the most important athlete in the sneaker business with this deal.

James's signature Nike shoe is estimated to earn upwards of $400 million in total 2015 sales.

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(Photo: Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

Written by Mark Lelinwalla

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