Darren Rovell and Marc Stein:
With Durant on the verge of a move to Under Armour, sources told ESPN on Sunday that Nike exercised its right to match any rival shoe company’s offer to the Oklahoma City Thunder star. A source with knowledge of the deal later told ESPN that Durant has indeed signed with the Oregon-based company.
Nike countered Under Armour’s offer of between $265 million and $285 million and believes it will keep Kevin Durant for the next 10 years, sources told ESPN.
The most interesting aspect of this isn’t that Nike beat out Under Armour, it’s that Durant went with Nike even though Under Armour’s deal was said to include a huge chunk of Under Armour stock. This is the same type of deal Under Armour cut with the NFL owners in 2006 to get their foot in the door — and it’s worked out very well for the NFL ($4.5M turned into well over $100M).
Hard to see the downside of going with Nike here, but it could end up being shortsighted by Durant.