Ask a question about League or Riot, and we’ll try to answer it. Answers go live every other Thursday at 1:30 pm (PT)
Today we are excited to announce that Nike will partner with the League of Legends Pro League (LPL) to become the official apparel and footwear partner of the league. Based in China, the LPL is one of the 13 Premier Regional Leagues that qualify teams for major global events like the upcoming Mid-Season Invitational and the League of Legends World Championship.
Since its founding, NIKE has been committed to building a strong connection with athletes around the world. Early in the company’s history, Nike co-founder Bill Bowerman famously stated “If you have a body, you are an athlete.” The Nike brand embodies excellence and today expands its presence into the world of esports to inspire a new generation of athletes through League of Legends.
In 2018, the LPL had a standout year which saw teams and players from the league win the World Championships, the Mid-Season Invitational, and the Asian Games. During the past 18 months, the LPL has continued to innovate and expand through multiple groundbreaking changes. Last year the league adopted a permanent partnership model and became the first esports property in the world to incorporate a true Home & Away model. The Home & Away model saw five teams adopt home cities in China and begin playing matches from their own dedicated esports arenas. At the start of 2019 the LPL expanded from 14 to 16 teams by providing SinoDragon Gaming and Victory 5 with permanent partnerships in the league.
“Esports athletes share the same determination and competitive spirit as all athletes, they spend their lives preparing for intense competition, working relentlessly to improve their reflexes, coordination, vision, mentality and teamwork,” says Eric Wei, Vice President of Category Marketing at Nike in Greater China. “We are very excited to support LPL teams and players with ground-breaking esports game-day gear and training programs that will help unleash their full potential.”
Starting this year, Nike will provide apparel and footwear for all 16 teams of the LPL. As part of the agreement, Nike will continue to explore new ways to serve esport athletes through research and customized physical training programs. LPL athletes will be equipped with an all-new team kit ahead of the 2019 World Championships. LPL fans also will be able to get in on the action with a full range of new fan gear.
“Our unprecedented partnership with Nike will enable LPL teams and players to continue to shine on the world stage,” said Leo Lin, Co-CEO of TJ Sports, a joint venture between Tencent and Riot Games that manages and operates the LPL. “Esports is a digital sport and our collaboration with Nike will push it to new heights.”
Having such an iconic sports brand partner with one of our 13 premier leagues is a major step in elevating our sport. Nike is one of the most recognizable athletic brands in the world and we’re excited to have them support our competitions and pro players.