The selling of Michael Vick products took two monster hits on Friday, as both Nike and Reebok both took steps to no longer do business with the already tarnished quarterback. First Nike suspended its contract with Vick, just about one week after the company announced they would not be releasing his latest line of shoes. Then later on Friday, Vick’s #7 jersey was pulled from the shelves by the company that made them – Reebok.
“Nike is concerned by the serious and highly disturbing allegations made against Michael Vick, and we consider any cruelty to animals inhumane and abhorrent,” Nike spokesman Dean Stoyer said in a statement. Nike was well aware of the protests that surrounded the charges of dog fighting that face Vick. In the end, having Vick as a client is simply not worth it. In the meantime, they didn’t totally scrap the relationship just in case he does end up innocent in the case. “We do believe that Michael Vick should be afforded the same due process as any citizen in the United States,” the Nike statement said. “Therefore, we have not terminated our relationship.”
Reebok, which is the official uniform supplier of the National Football League, stated on Friday they would stop selling Vick’s jersey in stores, and also pulled them from the chance of being ordered on their website. “We just find the allegations very upsetting and very disturbing,” Reebok spokeswoman Denise Kaigler said. “While this is just the beginning of the legal process and we know that it has to have time to run its course, we felt that making this decision now was important and the right things to do.” And as if Nike and Reebok isn’t enough, Donruss, one of the biggest trading card companies, has decided to pull Vick’s card from any future 2007 releases.
The bottom line is that both PETA and the Humane Society is all over the case of Vick, and as of right now with the many allegations against him, no one wants to step in and do business with #7. “Regardless of Vick’s guilt or innocence in a court of law, the facts in this case clearly support this decision,” PETA said. “No company wants a spokesperson with a massive illegal dog fighting ring operating on his property, regardless of his level of involvement.”
Even here on this very site, a reader put up links to send emails to companies that do business with Vick, urging them to quit. Reports say that over 165,000 emails were sent to Nike through the Humane Society’s web site putting the heat on Vick. “We asked them to do this and the pressure continued to build, especially as the facts of the indictment came out. It simply became an untenable position,” said Wayne Pacelle, president of the HSUS.
Right now Vick has nowhere to run and nowhere to hide from the many that want him to face the punishment that comes along with the allegations of what he did. He will have his day in court, but until then, Vick is going to find it somewhat hard to escape the wrath that all the companies that he does business with already passing judgment on him.