In Ireland, Brian Keogh reported speculation has grown that golfer Rory McIlroy "could be in line to sign a massive deal with Nike when his current contract with Titleist/Footjoy expires at the end of the year." The deal "could be worth" up to $250M over 10 years. Tiger Woods remains the "undisputed face of Nike," so it is still to be determined "what will happen next and whether or not McIlroy is being groomed to take over from Woods." Image is "paramount to a sports giant that hit the headlines this week when it terminated its endorsement contract" with cyclist Lance Armstrong (IRISH TIMES, 10/20).
CAR & DRIVER: MSG has announced a long-term extension of its marketing partnership with Kia, making the car company a “signature partner." Kia will be the official vehicle of the namesake arena, the Knicks, Rangers and WNBA Liberty, college basketball, tennis and concerts, and the Theatre at MSG. The deal includes expanded exposure on the MSG Networks and on team websites. In addition, Kia vehicles will be displayed year-round in the arena’s lobby and Kia customers will be eligible for exclusive promotions (Christopher Botta, SportsBusiness Journal).
DADDY DEAREST: With reports that Danica Patrick may not appear in future Go Daddy Super Bowl ads, Speed's Krista Voda asked, “How is this a smart move? She is, other than Dale Earnhardt Jr., the most popular or most talked about, marketable figure in NASCAR.” NASCAR analyst and former NASCAR driver Kyle Petty said Go Daddy “put a lot of money, a lot of time, a lot of effort into that image. If they need to go in a different direction for that company, then that’s what they should do." Petty added, “It’s funny to me that we talk more about Danica again off the racetrack and what she is as a ‘marketing machine’ more so than what we talk about on the racetrack” ("Wind Tunnel with Dave Despain," Speed, 10/21).
DRESS FOR SUCCESS: In Boston, Tenley Woodman reported GK Elite Leotards last week announced it is coming out with a signature line for Gold Medal-winning U.S. gymnast Aly Raisman. The agreement is the latest endorsement for Raisman, who already has deals with Pandora Jewelry, Got Milk?, Kellogg's, American Girl, Poland Spring and TruMoo. Octagon Managing Dir of Olympic & Action Sports Peter Carlisle, who reps Raisman, said, "The deals she has are unique in that they are not companies that you think of doing deals with athletes. They are companies that tied into her interests off the mat" (BOSTON HERALD, 10/21).