Nike boss: Woods scandal will just be 'a blip'

BY foxsports • December 15, 2009

Tiger Woods lost one sponsor yesterday, but a couple of others are sticking with the troubled golfer.

Nike chairman and co-founder Phil Knight played down the scandal in an interview with Sports Business Journal, saying "When his career is over, you'll look back on these indiscretions as a minor blip, but the media is making a big deal out of it right now."

Knight also says the company did a background check before signing Woods and "he came out clean."

He gave no indication the apparel company would back off from its relationship with Woods, saying scandals involving athlete endorsements are "part of the risk."

Swiss watch maker Tag Heuer said Monday it will continue its association with Woods despite the golfer's alleged infidelities. Company spokeswoman Mariam Sylla said the sponsorship is unchanged because Woods remains the world's best golfer and Tag Heuer does not care about his private life. "We will continue," Sylla told The Associated Press. "He's the best in his domain. "We respect his performance in the sport," she said, adding that Woods' personal life is "not our business."

Tag Heuer has been sponsoring Woods since 2002. Financial details of the agreement have not been announced.

Tag Heuer's comment came a day after global consulting firm Accenture PLC became the first major sponsor to announce it was cutting ties with Woods.

Woods announced Friday he is taking an indefinite leave from golf to work on his marriage after allegations of infidelity surfaced in recent weeks.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.

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