SBD/Issue 86/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

adidas Drops Gilbert Arenas As Endorser Following Guilty Plea

adidas Friday said that it was "dumping longtime endorser" Wizards G Gilbert Arenas after his "guilty plea on felony gun charges" in DC, according to Michael McCarthy of USA TODAY. The move "demonstrates the short fuse that Madison Avenue now has with wayward athletic endorsers." adidas earlier this month had initially said it was "evaluating" its relationship with Arenas after NBA Commissioner David Stern suspended Arenas indefinitely without pay (USATODAY.com, 1/15). AD AGE's Jeremy Mullman noted as of Friday, Arenas' picture was "still prominent on adidas' website, even after he entered his guilty plea." Arenas had endorsed adidas since '03 and had been a "staple of the company's basketball marketing for years, alongside" Rockets G Tracy McGrady, Celtics F Kevin Garnett and Magic C Dwight Howard (ADAGE.com, 1/15). The adidas Web site no longer contains any references to Arenas (THE DAILY).

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