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SBD/Issue 15/Sponsorships, Advertising & MarketingPrint All
Nike Says It Does Not Have
Endorsement Deal With Vick
CONFUSED BY NIKE STATEMENT: The Nike statement left many in the industry puzzled, including agents who said Nike typically writes up contracts for product-only or merchandise-only deals with athletes. Agents requested anonymity, saying they did not want to offend Nike because they negotiate deals with the company. "They do contracts for their product-only Nike guys," said one agent. "If it's a merchandise-only deal, they absolutely do contracts." A contract that provides product only, valued at $25,000, for example, would often include incentive clauses for cash payments if the NFL player hit certain targets, such as playing in the Pro Bowl, this agent said. Another agent said Nike sends out tax Form 1099s to players with merchandise-only deals, as these deals often give the athlete and his family the ability to order Nike product for many different sports up to a set dollar amount. Yet another agent said that Nike does do deals without contracts for NFL players in which it provides only on-the-field product, but those contracts are reserved for very low-profile NFL players, such as the team's long-snapper or a player on the practice squad who later moves onto the regular roster. Such deals are often agreed to by the player himself and a Nike field rep. Vick's agent, Joel Segal of BEST, told SportsBusiness Journal on Wednesday that he negotiated the deal for Vick but would not provide any details. Segal did not return phone calls Thursday, nor did Principe.
DOING THE BEST THEY CAN? Many in the industry praised the BEST agency for its efforts in getting Vick re-instated into the NFL, but questioned the release of the information about the new relationship with Nike. "The biggest mistake was made by the agent," said Sonny Vaccaro, a retired basketball sports marketing executive who has worked at Reebok, adidas and Nike. "By making a statement at that particular conference at that particular time made him what he wanted to be -- the star of the show." Many in the industry noted that this year has been the worst year ever for shoe deals for athletes and that many NFL and NBA players are going with product-only deals. Some speculated that the deal with Vick was for him to wear Nike without compensation, with the idea that he would get an endorsement contract later depending on his performance on and off the field.
Vick Had Endorsed Nike Up Until Indictment
On Federal Dog Fighting Charges In '07
TO SIGN VICK OR NOT TO SIGN VICK: ESPN's Jim Rome said just because an endorsement deal between Nike and Vick has not been signed yet "doesn't mean it won't happen." Rome: "In fact, I'd be surprised if it doesn't happen. Nike is not a church or a governmental agency. Nike is a business -- big business -- and Vick, apparently, is still good for business" ("Jim Rome Is Burning," ESPN, 10/1). Dallas Morning News columnist Tim Cowlishaw: "They don't mind him wearing their product, they don't mind their product being on national TV." However, there "will not be Nike commercials." But ESPN's Jackie MacMullan said, "Michael Vick hasn't done anything yet on the football field to regain Nike's good graces" ("Around The Horn," ESPN, 10/1). Carlos Diaz, a reporter for syndicated entertainment show "Extra," said, "The reason you sponsor and endorse someone is because you want someone to buy their products because they wear the shoe. Who's going to buy a product that Michael Vick wears? He's not the kind of person you want to emulate" ("Showbiz Tonight," CNN, 10/1).
PLANTING THE SEED? ESPN's Michael Wilbon said of Vick's representatives stating they had a deal with Nike, "They want to make it seem like the runway is open now" ("PTI," ESPN, 10/1). CSN Mid-Atlantic’s Al Koken: “I think Nike’s testing the waters.” Washington Post reporter Jason Reid: I know Joel Segal and he’s not an idiot. The only person that would come out and say we have a deal if he didn’t have a deal with them would be an idiot. I think what happened is you get on these message boards and all of a sudden, people say we’re not going to buy Nike anymore. There’s no way that they said this and Joel Segal was just wrong about this" (“Washington Post Live,” CSN Mid-Atlantic, 10/1).
LATE NIGHT LAUGHS: NBC's Conan O'Brien said, "Contrary to rumors, Nike says they are not, I repeat not, resuming their relationship with controversial quarterback Michael Vick. Also, rethinking their relationship with Michael Vick: Kibbles ‘n Bits" ("The Tonight Show," NBC, 10/1). ABC's Jimmy Kimmel said, "Nike said legally they wouldn't even be allowed to negotiate something like that until they figure out if it would conflict with the terms of his deal with Satan. ... His agent says he has a contract, Nike says he doesn't. It's the Odom-Kardashian wedding of endorsement deals." More Kimmel: "One thing we definitely know for sure is he will not be renewing his deal with Milk-Bone" ("Jimmy Kimmel Live," ABC, 10/1).
HBC's Official Canadian Olympic Apparel
Pared Down, Simple, With Slight Vintage Feel
FASHION FORWARD? The GLOBE & MAIL’s Amy Verner writes HBC’s new line is “certainly a safer and more obvious direction than the cross-cultural mess that made the Beijing clothing such an embarrassment.” These are items that have been “designed to sell; even if some Canadians are left cold by the nostalgic knitwear, foreigners will likely regard the pieces as quaint and worth buying as stylish souvenirs.” Where the apparel “comes up short is originality.” Online feedback Thursday “suggested a mildly positive reaction to the collection, especially compared to the Summer 2008 clothes, which were largely unwearable” (GLOBE & MAIL, 10/2). Timmins said that she “thinks the must-have item will be the pom pom toque,” priced at C$20. Timmins: “I would love to see that everywhere” (CALGARY SUN, 10/2). Timmins said that “everything to be worn by Canadian athletes will be made in Canada; only 25[%] of the merchandise sold to consumers will be Canadian-made.” In Vancouver, Bruce Constantineau notes the total value of licensed Olympic merchandise worldwide is “expected to top the [C$500M] mark by the time the Games end, resulting in about [C$54M] in revenue for VANOC” (VANCOUVER SUN, 10/2). The GLOBE & MAIL’s Marina Strauss notes HBC has priced the clothing about 20-25% “lower than items produced for the 2006 Winter Games in Torino.” Charlton Strategic Research Inc. President Gordon Hendren said that 11% of Canadians “reported buying Canadian Olympics merchandise” during the Beijing Games, down from 17% for Torino. Hendren said of HBC, “They clearly missed the mark in the past two Games. This is a big one. What’s at stake here is much bigger than it was in the past” (GLOBE & MAIL, 10/2).
Canada's Liberal Party Says Olympic Logo (l)
Too Similar To Conservative Party's Logo (r)
AMERICAN INFLUENCE: The VANCOUVER SUN’s Constantineau notes the home base for Canada’s Olympic team during the ’10 Games will sit within a building that “features nine massive exterior banners of U.S. athletes.” IOC TOP sponsors Visa, which is responsible for 15 of the 32 banners, “chose to feature nine U.S. athletes and six Canadian Olympians.” HBC features Canadian athletes on all of its 17 banners. COC Dir of Communications Steve Keogh said that the COC “doesn’t have a problem with competing athletes adorning the building’s exterior” (VANCOUVER SUN, 10/2). Visa Canada Acting Head of Corporate Communications Amy Cole said that the banners are “part of the company’s ‘Go World’ campaign.” Cole: “They profile members of Team Visa, which is a global program” (Vancouver PROVINCE, 10/2).
Samsung Drops Title Sponsorship
Of LPGA Event At Torrey Pines
Vikings QB Brett Favre's No. 4 jersey was the top seller at NFLShop.com from April 1-September 30. Jets QB Mark Sanchez rose to the No. 4 spot after ranking No. 7 on the list for the April 1-August 28 period. Notably, six of the seven starting QBs for teams that are currently 3-0 -- Favre, Sanchez, Drew Brees, Ravens Joe Flacco, Eli Manning and Peyton Manning -- rank in the top 25 (NFL).TOP SELLING NFL PLAYER JERSEYS
RK RK 1 Vikings QB Brett Favre 14 Ravens QB Joe Flacco 2 Steelers S Troy Polamalu 15 Steelers WR Hines Ward 3 Bears QB Jay Cutler 16 Packers QB Aaron Rodgers 4 Jets QB Mark Sanchez 17 Saints QB Drew Brees 5 Eagles QB Michael Vick 18 Falcons QB Matt Ryan 6 Cowboys QB Tony Romo 19 Chargers RB LaDainian Tomlinson 7 Giants QB Eli Manning 20 Cardinals WR Larry Fitzgerald 8 Patriots QB Tom Brady 21 Giants RB Brandon Jacobs 9 Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger 22 49ers LB Patrick Willis 10 Vikings RB Adrian Peterson 23 Cowboys RB Marion Barber 11 Colts QB Peyton Manning 24 Eagles RB Brian Westbrook 12 Bills WR Terrell Owens 25 49ers RB Frank Gore 13 Cowboys TE Jason Witten
HOOP IT UP: Lakers G Kobe Bryant's No. 24 jersey was the top selling NBA jersey in Europe during the '08-09 season. Eight of the top 15 players on the list are from Europe. Meanwhile, Sparks F Candace Parker's No. 3 jersey was the top-selling WNBA jersey at the NBA Store and WNBAStore.com during the '09 regular season (NBA). ESPN's Michael Wilbon said of Bryant having the highest-selling jersey in Europe and Asia for the second year in a row, "I think LeBron's got the United States. But Europe and Asia, Kobe owning it" ("PTI," ESPN, 10/1). The following lists the top 10 NBA jerseys in Europe and the top 10 WNBA jerseysTOP 10 NBA JERSEYS IN EUROPETOP 10 MOST POPULAR WNBA JERSEYS
RK JERSEYS RK PLAYER 1 Lakers G Kobe Bryant 1 Sparks F Candace Parker 2 Celtics F Kevin Garnett 2 Sparks F Lisa Leslie 3 Lakers C Pau Gasol 3 Silver Stars G Becky Hammon 4 Cavaliers F LeBron James 4 Mercury F Diana Taurasi 5 Heat G Dwyane Wade 5 Liberty F Shameka Christon 6 Spurs G Tony Parker 6 Liberty G Essence Carson 7 Magic C Dwight Howard 7 Storm G Sue Bird 8 Raptors F Andrea Bargnani 8 Liberty C Janel McCarville 9 Raptors G Jose Calderon 9 Dream F Angel McCoughtry 10 Celtics F Paul Pierce 10 Shock G Deanna Nolan
Subway Says Deal With
NBC Sports A First
THE POWER OF CHEESE: Packers WR Greg Jennings has signed on as a spokesperson for A&W Restaurants in Wisconsin, and "soon will be featured in television commercials and billboards promoting the chain's new Snack Bite Pack," among other promotions. The restaurant made a $10,000 donation to Jennings' foundation (GREEN BAY PRESS-GAZETTE, 10/2).
ROUNDUP: MLB plans to feature Twins C Joe Mauer in its national TV ad effort, airing a spot that is "expected to include video of Mauer as a youngster playing in St. Paul" (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 10/2)....NFL Players Inc. recently released the NFL Players Caricature line, its first exclusively licensed collection featuring illustrations of NFL players on various products, including T-shirts, mugs and water bottles. There are 17 NFLers featured in the collection (NFL Players).