Reigning UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones hassigned a ground breaking, multi-year endorsement deal with sports apparel giant Nike.
"Blessed to be signed by the biggest sports apparel company in the world, Nike. Dreams do come true. Never allow anyone to tell you what you can or cannot do," Jones tweeted on Wednesday.
According to a report by MMAFighting.com, the 25-year-old will begin wearing Nike's famous "Swoosh" logo for his upcoming title fight against Dan Henderson on September 1. As part of the deal, Jones will reportedly be featured on worldwide Nike advertising and receive his own signature line. An official announcement regarding the agreement is expected to come next week.
While Anderson Silva and Yoshihiro Akiyama have received Nike deals in their respective countries, Jones' agreement comes as the biggest of its kind, spanning Nike's entire global reach.
Nike currently stands as the world's biggest sports apparel company, with $43 billion market cap. In 2011, the company reportedly earned $20.9 billion in revenue.
Jones, meanwhile, become the youngest champion in UFC history at age 23. Dominant victories over the likes of Brandon Vera, Vladimir Matyushenko and Ryan Bader propelled him into the title picture last year, where he dispatched world-ranked division standout Mauricio "Shogun" Rua to capture the 205-pound title.
Since earning the belt, Jones has looked even more impressive, defending his crown against three former champions in six months: Quinton "Rampage" Jackson, Lyoto Machida, and most recently, longtime rival Rashad Evans.
Jones' next title defense comes on September 1 against former Strikeforce and PRIDE titleholder Dan Henderson at Las Vegas' Mandalay Bay Events Center. The five-round title bout headlines UFC 151.
About the Author
Written by Matt Manzella
Matt Manzella is the founder and managing editor of CageReligion.com, as well as ProGuitarNews.com. He also serves as a professional play-by-play commentator and MMA judge in the state of Michigan.
Matt Manzella is the managing editor for CageReligion.com and host of Cage Religion Radio. Matt has been working in the television broadcasting industry for over seven years and is also a play-by-play commentator and judge for the Impact Fight League and Warrior Xtreme Cagefighting.
Phil Lanni is the co-host of Cage Religion Radio. Phil wrestled three years in the NCWA at Grand Valley State University -- a team that won nationals all three years. As an individual, Phil is a three-time national qualifier and was ranked seventh in the nation at 184-pounds to earn All-American status. Phil also serves as a color commentator and judge for the Impact Fight League.