CBSLA Sports Director Jim Hill chats with Hall of Fame photographer Andrew D. Bernstein about his storied career and what it’s like covering the NBA Finals for 40 years.
Magic Johnson is one of the biggest names to have ever played in the NBA, and very few players have enjoyed the hype he did coming into the NBA. Having led his college team to the NCAA championship over his rival Larry Bird in what was the most-watched college basketball game ever, Magic entered the league as the man of the moment and would go on to be Finals MVP in his rookie season as well.
Understandably, Johnson was a coveted property when it came to endorsements and there was a bit of a battle in terms of which shoe company he would sign with. Both Nike and Converse made offers to Magic and the decision came down to whether he would take stocks instead of cash, with the 19-year-old choosing Converse, who had offered him $100,000 a year at the time.
However, with the benefit of hindsight, it’s the offer that Nike put on the table that would have made him a lot more money had he chosen to go with them. The company offered Johnson $1 for every pair of shoes sold along with 100,000 shares in stock options, with the stock valued at $0.18 at the time.
When contextualized, considering that Nike stock is worth $134 today, Johnson would have $5.2 billion to his name had he decided to sign with the company. However, Converse was a bigger brand than Nike at the time, which adds some more context as to why Magic made his decision as well.
Nike went on to explode with Michael Jordan, who did end up becoming a billionaire, thanks largely in part to his partnership with the shoe company. There were suggestions that Jordan’s rise and the hype around him and Nike were factors in souring his relationship with Magic a little in their early years, but the two went on to bond during their stint with the 1992 Dream Team. Also, considering that Magic is now worth an estimated $600 million, it’s safe to say he didn’t do too badly for himself either.
Source: Business Insider
Full one-hour Australian Story documentary on former Chicago Bulls starting centre Luc Longley.
In this clip, TK Kirkland explained why some people are more gifted than others, including Eddie Murphy, who is gifted in the world of comedy. TK then spoke about other greats, including the Williams sisters, Tiger Woods, Michael Jackson, and Floyd Mayweather, as people who were pushed by their parents to be great. To hear his full argument on why some people “need a little dictatorship,” hit the above clip.
Kwame Brown discussion with former Washington Wizards Jahidi White, Chris Whitney and Tyrone Nesby.
Tim Grover trained the one and only Michael Jordan and some of the world’s most elite athletes, and he’s also got a new book out: ‘Winning: The Unforgiving Race to Greatness.’ Tim Grover joins Skip Bayless and Shannon Sharpe to discuss the differences between training Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and Russell Wilson.
In the latest clip, Adam22 reacted to Michael Jai White calling out the lack of rejection the “Stop Asian Hate” movement received in comparison to “Black Lives Matter.” The No Jumper host said he understood where people were coming from when they said “All Lives Matter” before pointing out the ways people of color are praised based on their “victim class.” He expressed his belief that the rise in White nationalism is tied to the praise people of color receive in popular media. Adam also wondered if “sloganeering” racial injustice is the best long-term solution for all races to interact harmoniously. To hear the discussion, check out the above clip.
Kobe Bryant created his own shots as well as any player in NBA history. On this episode of Signature Shots, ESPN analyst Kirk Goldsberry traces the Mamba’s evolution from a rim-attacking rookie to the master of unassisted two-point jumpers.
“With Kobe Bryant’s five-year, post-retirement endorsement extension with Nike having expired this month, Vanessa Bryant and the Kobe Bryant estate elected not to renew the partnership, she confirmed to ESPN in a statement Monday night,” wrote Nick DePaula of ESPN.com.
Kobe Bryant spent his first several years being sponsored by Adidas, even though Adidas was never a big-time player on the basketball shoe market.
Eventually, he joined Nike, starting a fruitful partnership for both parties.
“Kobe’s Nike contract expired on 4/13/21,” Vanessa Bryant, widow of the Lakers legend, told ESPN. “Kobe and Nike have made some of the most beautiful basketball shoes of all time, worn and adored by fans and athletes in all sports across the globe. It seems fitting that more NBA players wear my husband’s product than any other signature shoe.”
Kobe Bryant and eight others died in a tragic helicopter crash in Calabasas, Calif. last January.
His influence on basketball and its culture is still seen to this day, as several current NBA players still wear his signature sneakers.
That desire may have been fueled by some differences with Nike.
“According to a source, Bryant and the estate had grown frustrated with Nike limiting the availability of Kobe product during his retirement and after his January 2020 death in a helicopter crash,” wrote DePaula. “There was also frustration with the lack of availability of Kobe footwear in kids sizes, according to sources.
“Nike, sources said, had presented an extension offer that was not in line with expectations of an ongoing ‘lifetime’ structure similar to the Nike Inc. contracts held by both Michael Jordan and LeBron James.”
Source: Lakers Daily