Nike stock falls after Kaepernick deal revealed

Nike’s stock fell in early trading on Tuesday after an announcement that controversial American football star Colin Kaepernick has a new deal with the athletic clothing and footwear maker.

Kaepernick’s lawyer Mark Geragos made the announcement on Twitter, calling the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback an “All American Icon”.

Kaepernick already had a deal with Nike that was set to expire, but it was renegotiated into a multi-year deal to make him one of the faces of Nike’s 30th anniversary “Just Do It” campaign, according to a person familiar with the contract.

The NFL and Nike extended their partnership in March to run through to 2028. Nike provides all NFL teams with game-day kits and sideline apparel that bears the swoosh logo.

Shares in Nike dropped 2%.

Kaepernick was one of the first NFL players to kneel during the US national anthem in a series of protests against racial injustice.

Last week, he scored a legal victory in his grievance against the NFL and its 32 teams when an arbitrator denied the league’s request to throw out his claims that owners conspired to keep him out of the league because of his protests.

Kaepernick contends the owners violated their collective bargaining agreement with players by conspiring to keep him off teams.

His case hinges on whether owners worked together rather than decided individually to not sign him.

A similar grievance is still pending by former 49ers teammate Eric Reid, who joined in the protests.

Kaepernick began a wave of protests by NFL players two seasons ago, kneeling during the national anthem to protest against police brutality and racial inequality.

The protests have grown into one of the most polarising issues in sport, with President Donald Trump loudly urging the league to suspend or fire players who demonstrate during the anthem.

The league and the players’ union have not resolved whether players will be punished this season if they choose to kneel or demonstrate during the national anthem.

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