Cycling

Nike Chairman Won't Rule out Future Deal with Lance Armstrong

Adam WellsFeatured ColumnistJanuary 16, 2013

Lance Armstrong used to be one of the faces of Nike, and if he is able to resurrect his career, the company may bring him back one day. 

Nike Chairman Phil Knight told TMZ.com "never say never" when asked if the company would consider bringing Armstrong into the fold one more time. He did say that "they don't have any plans" in place to try and bring him back. 

When Armstrong was winning seven straight Tour de France titles from 1999-2005, which have since been wiped from the record books, Nike was the symbol that followed him around on his bike, his uniform and the Livestrong attire that he wore wherever he went. 

Following a detailed report from the United States Anti-Doping Agency that was released last October that outed Armstrong as a cheater, Nike terminated his contract with the company. 

When the termination was announced, Nike cited "insurmountable evidence" against Armstrong as the basis for ending it. 

The clothing and footwear company said it would continue to support Mr. Armstrong's cancer charity and carry Livestrong-branded products. The Lance Armstrong Foundation, known as Livestrong, for years has had a partnership with Nike, allowing it to license the Livestrong brand for a collection of clothing, shoes and other merchandise.

Armstrong has had an eventful week already, though most fans and media members won't know the full extent of it until his interview with Oprah Winfrey airs on Thursday and Friday on the OWN network. 

Winfrey has said that the interview was mesmerizing and everyone in the audience was "riveted by some of his answers."

While Armstrong shouldn't put his eggs into the Nike basket again, he also has to be encouraged by the fact that Knight is at least saying publicly the window isn't entirely closed. 

 

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