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LeBron James signs lifetime deal with Nike

LeBron James Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption James has won two NBA titles and is a four-time NBA MVP

American basketball star LeBron James has signed a lifetime deal with the world's biggest sporting goods firm, Nike.

Mr James, who turns 31 later this month, has been with Nike since 2003 when he signed a $90m (£59.7m) contract with the firm.

The sports star's latest deal is believed to be the first lifetime contract ever signed by Nike.

No financial terms around the deal have been released so far.

However, early reports suggested it would be more than the $300m 10-year contract Nike signed with basketball star Kevin Durant - an Oklahoma City Thunder player.

Mr James is a four-time National Basketball Association (NBA) most-valuable player and has won two Olympic gold medals. He played for the Cleveland Cavaliers from 2003 to 2010 before moving to Miami Heat for some four years. In July 2014 he returned to the Cavaliers.

Nike said it had agreed to a lifetime relationship with Mr James "that provides significant value to our business, brand and shareholders."

"We have already built a strong LeBron business over the past 12 years, and we see the potential for this to continue to grow throughout his playing career and beyond," the sporting giant said.

Speaking to reporters on Monday after the deal had been announced, Mr James said, "I'm very humble, man."

"It's been an unbelievable time for myself and my family, and I'm just grateful that Nike and [Nike founder] Phil Knight, and everyone over there, just believed in a skinny old, skinny 18-year-old kid from Akron, Ohio, and I'm happy to be a part of such a great company," he said.

In addition to playing professional basketball, Mr James has his own shoe line with Nike as well as a production company. He also has deals with McDonalds, Coca-Cola and Samsung among other companies.

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