NIKE HELPS NBA PLAYERS (AND NFL TEAMS?) BEND LEAGUE RULES
AIRFARE AND EXPENSES COVERED: Nike is sending Anfernee
Hardaway, Alonzo Mourning and three other players to the Far East
to play in exhibition games that are not approved by the NBA.
Jason Kidd is joining the squad for its last stop in Japan.
Jerome Kersey said he was being fined $20,000 by his team for
going on the trip. Nike spokesperson Keith Peters declined to
say if any other players were being penalized, but that the
company would pick up the tab for any fines received (AP/SALT
LAKE TRIBUNE, 9/17).
SWEETENING THE POT FOR DEION? During Fox's "NFL Sunday,"
discussions of Deion Sanders' 49ers contract, Howie Long said
Sanders "is going to make a mountain of money off the field":
"Nike, it is rumored, will be paying him an additional $2 to $3
million because he is playing with the 49ers versus the small
market Atlanta Falcons" ("NFL Sunday," Fox, 9/18). Tom Friend
notes Nike reportedly "kicked in over" $1M to Sanders for signing
with a big-market team (N.Y. TIMES, 9/19).