Nike has suspended its endorsement contract with Adrian Peterson. “Nike in no way condones child abuse or domestic violence of any kind and has shared our concerns with the NFL,” the brand said in its release. Noting that suspension is different than termination, it’s a little bit of an about-face for Nike, which often sticks behind athletes far longer in these processes. As Darren Rovell reported, the brand didn’t end its relationship with Oscar Pistorius or Ray Rice until this past week.
As Tiger Woods lost sponsorships for infidelity and Ben Roethlisberger lost them after being accused of (but not charged with) sexual assault, Nike stuck with them. Nike co-founder and chairman Phil Knight gave a glowing eulogy for Joe Paterno; though a prosecutor determined that there was no evidence Paterno orchestrated a cover-up of Jerry Sandusky, the former Penn State coach did not do all that he could to prevent children from being sexually abused.
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