Report: DeMar DeRozan Signs New Nike Contract as Face of Kobe Bryant Sneaker Line

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVAugust 1, 2022

MILWAUKEE, WI - APRIL 20: DeMar DeRozan #11 of the Chicago Bulls drives to the basket against the Milwaukee Bucks during Round 1 Game 2 of the NBA 2022 Playoffs on April 20, 2022 at the Fiserv Forum Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images).
Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images

Chicago Bulls star DeMar DeRozan will sign a new four-year contract with Nike, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium.

Per Charania, the deal will keep DeRozan as "the featured face of Kobe Bryant's iconic line" of Nike sneakers.

DeRozan rocked a pair of Kobe 6s while hooping at the Drew League alongside LeBron James two weeks ago:

Nick DePaula @NickDePaula

The Kobe 6s worn by <a href="https://twitter.com/DeMar_DeRozan?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DeMar_DeRozan</a> at the <a href="https://twitter.com/DrewLeague?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DrewLeague</a> today are inspired by the <a href="https://twitter.com/WNBA?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@WNBA</a>’s orange hoody. <a href="https://t.co/MQdw7uZYeZ">pic.twitter.com/MQdw7uZYeZ</a>

In March, the estate of Bryant and Nike reached a long-term contract after the initial deal expired in 2021, per ESPN's Nick DePaula.

"Nearly 20 percent of NBA players have worn a Nike Kobe sneaker for a game since Bryant, along with his daughter, Gianna, and seven others died in a January 2020 helicopter crash," DePaula wrote. "During the 2019-20 season, 102 of the 322 total players competing in the league's restart at the Walt Disney World Resort wore a Kobe sneaker."

"We're excited to announce our partnership with Nike is going to continue!" Vanessa Bryant wrote on Instagram. "I am so proud that my husband's shoes are still the most worn by players on NBA courts and that the demand for his shoes remain so desired by his fans around the world."

As for DeRozan, he has often noted that Bryant was one of his basketball mentors and regularly rocks his namesake shoe.

Complex Sneakers @ComplexSneakers

.<a href="https://twitter.com/DeMar_DeRozan?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DeMar_DeRozan</a> says he has more Kobes than anyone else in the league 👀<br><br>FULL EPISODE: <a href="https://t.co/DGQdLID46P">https://t.co/DGQdLID46P</a> <a href="https://t.co/3DNROG7Rak">pic.twitter.com/3DNROG7Rak</a>

Chicago Bulls @chicagobulls

DeMar in the "USA" Kobe 10s tonight.<a href="https://twitter.com/DeMar_DeRozan?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DeMar_DeRozan</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BullsKicks?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#BullsKicks</a> <a href="https://t.co/V17fDXlX2I">pic.twitter.com/V17fDXlX2I</a>

Nice Kicks @nicekicks

I’m convinced DeMar DeRozan will never run out of Kobes 😳🔥 <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NBAAllStar?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NBAAllStar</a> <a href="https://t.co/817Ml3EJhq">pic.twitter.com/817Ml3EJhq</a>

Complex Sneakers @ComplexSneakers

.<a href="https://twitter.com/DeMar_DeRozan?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DeMar_DeRozan</a> always has exclusive Kobes on deck.<br>📸: <a href="https://twitter.com/David_Sherman?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@david_sherman</a> <a href="https://t.co/QLx7QamXL3">pic.twitter.com/QLx7QamXL3</a>

"For me personally, he meant everything to me basketball-wise," he told reporters in January. "That's well documented, a mentor of mine, a friend of mine, someone that taught me a big part of the game and motivated me to have the mentality that I have today."