‣ Reigning NBA Finals MVP, Nikola Jokic, is leaving Nike to join the Chinese shoe brand, 361°, becoming the face of the brand.
‣ This move marks a new era in NBA footwear and apparel, where athletes are increasingly signing with international brands.
‣ Despite Nike’s dominance in the NBA shoe game, it has previously lost other MVPs to rival brands, such as Steph Curry to Under Armour and James Harden to Adidas.
Nikola Jokic, the reigning NBA Finals MVP, is making a big move. He’s officially joining Aaron Gordon at 361°, a Chinese shoe brand.
Before this, Jokic was with Nike. He rocked their sneakers on the court for his first eight seasons in the NBA. And lately, he’s been the poster boy for the franchise’s GT Jump series.
Over time, Jokic’s shoes have become a hot topic. This started when the Denver Nuggets’ center began tying his wedding ring to his laces. Quirky, right? Now, the two-time NBA MVP is taking that buzz to a new company.
Jokic is saying goodbye to the Nike franchise. He’s now the face of the Chinese brand 361°. This move signifies a new era in NBA footwear and apparel. It’s a time when athletes can sign with international brands.
Rumors about Jokic parting ways with Nike have been swirling for weeks. Meanwhile, the Chinese shoe brand kept dropping hints about signing an MVP-caliber player.
Last week, the two-time NBA MVP was seen wearing 361 at a Denver Nuggets’ practice. Before that, he’d been a Nike guy all his career. Then, on Wednesday against the Toronto Raptors, Jokic revealed he signed with 361. He did this by wearing their shoes in a game for the first time ever.
Jokic isn’t alone at 361. Some of his Nuggets teammates, like Gordon and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, are already signed to the brand. 361 Degrees has also signed Brooklyn Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie. This makes it one of the most well-represented international shoe brands in the NBA.
Nike’s dominance in the NBA shoe game is undeniable. But it’s not the first time the brand has lost an MVP. Remember when Steph Curry left the brand to join Under Armour? Now, Curry has his own line with Under Armour and has signed other NBA players, like De’Aaron Fox, to his shoe line.
James Harden, another MVP, also left Nike for Adidas. Despite wearing Nike for the first six years of his career, he left the brand for his own signature shoe as a member of the Houston Rockets.
Now, Jokic has split from Nike. He’ll be the face of the global brand 361. While no numbers have been released about his contract, there are whispers that the company is fast-tracking a signature shoe for one of the best players in the NBA.