Following in the footsteps of Jon Jones and Anderson Silva, it looks like current UFC heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos is close to signing a deal with the world’s largest sports athletics company, Nike. If the deal goes through Junior will soon be sporting the clothes as early as his rematch title bout with Cain Velasquez, which comes at UFC 155 this December. Junior was originally signed to the clothing company Pretorian, but with Nike knocking on the door, the resign is unlikely as Nike is said to be an exclusive deal.
While some people were skeptical of Jones signing due to his run in with a pole due to alcohol, and leading to a DUI arrest, Junior has been nothing but an ambassador for the sport. He is often seen helping out with charities, and has a real passion for giving back to his home country of Brazil. Nike seems to be making the move on some of the bigger names in MMA due to their ability to transcend countries. While there may be some huge names that can shadow MMA stars in the USA, many MMA stars can drive business in other countries.
Brazil has proven to be an amazing place for stars of MMA as the Ultimate Fighter addition in Brazil drove numbers close to 18 million a week. With these numbers, a loyal fan base, and one of the biggest Brazilian stars up for a new clothing sponsor – the timing just makes sense. Nike will soon capitalize on this opening and most likely sign the heavyweight champion. This may just be the first of many to come.