via Imago

via Imago

It has been an engaging week for the baseball fans. With the playoffs coming closer, things are starting to heat up. The situation is not different off the field since Aaron Judge has leaped over Shohei Ohtani to become the next player on the Jordans’ roster. Given that Judge and Ohtani are two of the best modern MLB players, this deal has added more to their competition. As it happened after many expected Ohtani to lead the charge, it raised the question of what made Ohtani miss this opportunity.

Given Ohtani’s skills and popularity, he was termed the justified addition to Michael Jordan‘s legacy. With Judge signing ahead of him, some thought Michael Jordan’s anti-LA Bias caused the problem. But it seems Ohtani, himself, chose not to be part of this big deal. But what made the Japanese sensation choose a 40x smaller company against the $160 billion worth Nike?

Did Shohei Ohtani Ditch Nike for New Balance?

Nike and New Balance are two of the best athletic companies. And even after a lot of competition in the market, the rise of NB is a testament to its popularity among the masses. But Nike is miles ahead of NB in the top labels list. It is ranked seventh in the list of Global Top 100 Brands. In comparison, New Balance ranks at the 993rd position, way behind Nike. And when it comes to NB, it is at least forty times smaller than Nike. And if the brand value of Air Jordans is compared to New Balance, there is an unreal match.

Due to all this, Nike is one of the best brands any player would like to be associated with. Especially when you are Shohei Ohtani, who has shined since his debut in 2018. But he thinks differently. Even after being all the parameters to be part of Nike, he signed a multi-year footwear and apparel deal with New Balance.

It was a surprise for everyone, but it seems Ohtani related to NB as a lone star fighting against the top performers. Because he came from Japan and made his name with his performances, Ohtani may have seen NB in his image and signed a long-term partnership with custom apparel, cleats, and sneakers.

Now he has become a star performer and might become the highest-paid MLB athlete at the end of the season. This could push the Japanese wonder to go with Nike in the future.

Will Ohtani Join Hands With Jordan Brand?

Since Aaron Judge signed with Nike, the question of whether Sho-time will join Judge and other MLB stars on the Nike roster has picked pace. Though Ohtani is currently with New Balance, there is a higher possibility that he might have a collaboration with Nike in the future. Mike Trout referred to the same after he termed Ohtani the most deserving candidate for the deal in a recent interview.

Read More:- “It’s the Easiest Question…”: Angels Star Mike Trout Drops Shohei Ohtani Bomb While Seemingly Confirming a Big Upcoming Release

But with Judge’s deal, that perception got changed. With the face value Ohtani holds, there is likely to be an instant agreement if he chooses to sign for Nike. But with him already committed to NB, the deal is unlikely to happen in upcoming years. Do you think there will be any further change in it? Let us know your side in the comments.

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