On Wednesday, word emerged that Eagles quarterback Mike Vick has renewed acquaintances with Nike.
Mike Principe, whose agency represents Vick for marketing purposes, said that Vick has signed an endorsement deal with Nick.
Agent Joel Segal said that Vick is “excited to be part of the Nike team again,” but Segal said that Vick and Nike agreed not to discuss the details of the arrangement.
Nike apparently didn’t get the memo.
Darren Rovell of CNBC reports that a Nike spokesman says the company has no agreement with Vick. Instead, Nike is simply giving Vick free product.
“Nike does not have a contractual relationship with Michael Vick,” Nike
spokesman Kejuan Wilkins told Rovell in a statement. “We have agreed to
supply product to Michael Vick as we do a number of athletes who are
not under contract with Nike.”
Says Rovell on his Twitter page, “I knew this was all bogus.”
The purpose of the ruse is obvious. Principe and Segal, buoyed by the lack of criticism and/or outcry regarding Vick as he embarks on the second phase of his career, opted to take a liberty with reality, presumably in the hopes that the vague suggestion that Nike has re-embraced Vick might prompt other potential endorsers to follow suit.
But they didn’t count on the negative reaction to the impression that Nike was paying Vick in an economic environment where shoe deals have become scarce. And so Nike, which might have initially agreed to stay silent in response to whatever Vick’s camp said about the situation, needed to set the record straight.
Bottom line? Vick’s camp needs to continue to urge Mike to remain humble. The apparent fact that his arrangement with Nike was deliberately distorted by those around him makes us wonder how hard he’s pressing them behind the scenes to shake the trees that previously dropped cash-filled apples onto his feet.