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Volume 26 No. 85
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Tyler "Ninja" Blevins Agrees To Multiyear Partnership With Adidas

Pro streamer Tyler "Ninja" Blevins and Adidas have agreed to a "'muilt-year' partnership," according to H.B. Duran of THE ESPORTS OBSERVER. Neither Adidas nor Blevins "revealed details surrounding the partnership other than a tagline of 'Time In.'" A dedicated microsite has been "created that allows consumers to sign up for email alerts, although no specific merchandise has been revealed as of this writing" (ESPORTSOBSERVER.com, 8/28). ENGADGET's Edgar Alvarez noted Blevins had been seen "wearing Adidas outfits recently at different events, but not much was made of it until he teased a major reveal on his Twitter account, which featured a trippy video with an Adidas font on it." Adidas does currently "sponsor various professional esports teams," but the deal with Blevins is "significant because of the individual aspect of it." This announcement comes only a few weeks after Blevins "ditched Amazon's Twitch streaming service for Microsoft's Mixer" (ENGADGET.com, 8/27).

BEEN HERE BEFORE: THE VERGE's Jay Peters noted apparel companies signing deals with gaming stars is a "relatively new phenomenon," though Blevins' partnership with Adidas is "far from" his first with a brand. He has "long partnered with Samsung." Blevins also "makes money from a number of other deals, including a long-running Red Bull sponsorship, YouTube ads, and he gets paid to play certain games," including a reported $1M for playing EA’s Apex Legends at its launch earlier this year (THEVERGE.com, 8/27).

TWITTER REAX: Twitter Head of Gaming Content Partnerships Rishi Chadha: "This is a big move for Adidas & the gaming industry at large, and I'm excited to see more sportswear brands jump into gaming & esports with partnerships like this and more." Bidstack CMO Simon Gosling: "@Nike has @Cristiano @adidas has @OfficialRunDMC. Whilst Nike is Performance and athletes, Adidas is Street and cultural icons. No surprise Adidas signed Ninja. Esports are more their thing." Esports logo designer Owen Roe: "Ninja has proven himself to be the absolute gold standard for how sponsorship activations should be done. This Adidas partnership is huge." Complex Associate Editor Matthew Welty: "I totally understand why Adidas would sign someone like Ninja, but I always assumed that the majority of people play video games without sneakers on their feet."