With eSports popularity rising at a ridiculous rate, apparel brands are starting to take notice and are hopping on the wave.
adidas has its partnership with the insanely popular streamer Ninja, Puma unveiled its gaming sock, Champion and Foot Locker teamed up to bring eSports gear to retail stores and now its Nike’s turn. Today(Jan.16), the sportswear brand announced an exclusive apparel partnership with global esports organization T1 Entertainment & Sports (T1).
Nike also announced its partnership will extend across all T1 teams and players, including its first esports team, the mega-successful League of Legends squad SKT T1, the home of the biggest name in eSports, Faker. The swoosh will provide footwear and uniforms for him and his squad to embarrass the competition in.
Nike is committed to empowering T1 athletes by providing cutting-edge training facilities at T1 Headquarters in Seoul, which is expected to open later this year. Utilizing its unique sports research facilities and athletic training expertise, Nike will create and implement training programs that are designed to enhance the athletic capabilities of T1’s players and teams. Training program offerings will include physical and mental strength training that helps professional esports players further their careers.
Back in 2019, Faker visited Nike’s headquarters in Beaverton, Ohio, where he got a behind the scenes look at the Nike’s Sports Research Lab (NSRL). From there here worked with Nike trainers and biomechanists. The partnership between the two companies will not only deliver footwear and apparel, but it will also help make sure the athletes stay top physical condition and improve their performance with training programs.
“I can’t wait to see how Nike’s training and performance expertise will transform our team’s skills and the entire T1 organization,” Faker said, “It’s great to see Nike supporting esports, and we are excited to represent the Swoosh in competition.”
Brant Hirst, Marketing Director at Nike Korea, added:
“We’re interested in understanding and learning more about the relationship between improved physical fitness and athleticism as it relates to gaming. These athletes have unique skill sets that we believe that we can help them improve through tailored training methods.”
We are very intrigued to see what Nike cooks up for the eSports world, we are sure it will be something worthwhile.
Photo: picture alliance / Getty