Earning $30 million a year from Nike, LeBron James now joins the elite roster to get a building named after him

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LeBron James is arguably one of the greatest players of all time. Many fans around the world consider him on par with NBA great Michael Jordan. The Chicago Bulls legend was not only influential on the hardwood, but he was also a pioneer in terms of trade prowess. In fact, Jordan became the first athlete to earn the billionaire title. Recently, James became the first active player to be considered a billionaire. Now the Los Angeles Lakers superstar has emulated MJ once again in this elite achievement.

When it comes to sportswear giants Nike, Jordan is the superstar that propelled them to enormous heights. And helped them earn their fortune through his popularity and dominance on the pitch. MJ and Nike also changed the sneaker culture in the country with their iconic “Air Jordan” collection. On the other hand, Jordan has also gained a lot from his lifetime contract with the brand.

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According to reports, Nike earns $2.6-3 billion per year in sales from the Jordan brand alone and Jordan earns $130-150 million per year. Like the Bulls legend, James has a lifetime contract with Nike and earns $30 million a year according to reports.

The grand opening of the LeBron James Innovation Center

Now, LeBron James has managed to take another step in his relationship with Nike. The four-time NBA champion has finally opened the “LeBron James Innovation Center” on the Nike campus in Beaverton, Oregon. The 750,000 square foot building has been in development for years. With that, James joined an elite roster of athletes whose names adorn the buildings on the Nike campus. The listing includes sports greats like Jordan, Tiger Woods, Pete Sampras and Serena Williams, among others.

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During the opening ceremony, James could be seen opening a bottle of champagne surrounded by Nike executives. The newly opened center will be dedicated to research and experimentation with new products.

Ever since James became an icon in high school, he’s raised expectations to emulate Michael Jordan. Moreover, he was also dubbed as “the chosen one” by the media. However, he did not succumb to the enormous pressure to emulate a legend. Instead, he chose to wear it as a badge of honor.

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The Cleveland Cavaliers picked him as their first pick in the 2003 NBA Draft. And James never looked back. He dominated the league right out of high school and won the Rookie of the Year award. He then continued his development over the years and became one of the best players in the league.

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