Nike has officially unveiled its first ever esports jerseys, exclusively for the League of Legends Professional League (LPL), China’s main League of Legends Pro League equivalent to Europe’s LEC or North America’s LCS.
The shirts were first premiered on the last day of the LPL Summer Gauntlet as the final Chinese teams sought to solidify their spot at the League of Legends World Championship in October.
The three teams that have qualified for Worlds – Royal Never Give Up, Invictus Gaming and FunPlus Phoenix – will be the first to showcase the new jerseys during the flagship event, with the rest of the 16 LPL teams following suit at the start of the 2020 Spring Split.
The jerseys all feature a similar design, with a single button on the neck, a V-shaped pattern on the chest and a large crest at the bottom, as well as a certified Nike/LPL badge stitched on. The V-shaped pattern has been designed individually, catered to each team. For example, Invictus’ is inspired by the wings of the angels, “symbolising IG’s fast and fierce competition style”.
Each and every jersey has design elements – be it symbols or stylistic decisions – that are intended to represent the team in unique ways, but they all cater to a similar idea; the strength of teamwork and the pursuit of glory in esports. The jerseys also feature Nike’s Dri-FIT construction, much like what Nike’s sports jerseys use.
It’s not yet been announced how this will impact sponsorships – most LPL teams have plenty of sponsorships on their jerseys but this may not slide with Nike, especially if there are any conflicts of interest.
This isn’t the first time fashion and esports have crossed paths – Team Vitality wear Adidas jerseys, Cloud9 is partnered with Puma and 100 Thieves recently showcased their exclusive, player-only 100T-branded Nike Air Max 1.