Nike, the world’s premier brand in sports equipment and apparel, has announced the endorsement deal of Jian “Uzi” Zihao, a League of Legends player of Royal Never Give Up (RNG). This is Nike’s first-ever eSports endorsement deal.
Zihao, Chinese actor Bai Jingting, and NBA basketball legend LeBron James will together promote James’ “Dribble &” marketing campaign in support of his upcoming documentary series “Shut Up and Dribble”. In the ad, Zihao appears wearing a black T-shirt with the text “Dribble & Carry”, with the key word “Carry” (a term used in League of Legends to mean a single player pushing his or her team to victory) only appearing on Zihao’s jersey.
Zihao is widely known as one of the best League of Legends players. Zihao has a considerable fan following in China. Chinese media CCTV has even made a documentary about Zihao’s esports career. He participated in the Jakarta Asian Games and won the golden medal for China’s national League of Legends team.
Chinese esports organisations have been signing many non-endemic deals in recent months, with Mercedes-Benz and KFC having each signed a one-year sponsorship deal with RNG.
Source: Esports Observer