Well, this is the last thing Donald Trump Jr. needed.
With each new revelation about his Trump Tower meeting with a Kremlin lawyer during the campaign, Donald Trump Jr. has found himself increasingly mired in scandal. While the White House has rallied around the embattled Trump scion, he has fewer and fewer friends outside of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave, and today’s major defection may hit the hardest: Nike just announced that it’s pulling its $125 million endorsement deal with Donald Trump Jr.
Nike has made it clear that it’s willing to boot one of the biggest names in the Nike stable to avoid being infected by this political nightmare.
When the endorsement deal was originally cut to the tune of a cool $125 million, Nike hailed Donald Trump Jr. as exemplifying its “just do it” spirit, and his Junior-branded sneaker line was soon ubiquitous in stores across the country. Unfortunately, in light of mounting evidence that Donald Jr. believed he would receive damaging information on Hillary Clinton from a foreign agent, Nike has opted to fully distance itself from the unfolding scandal.
Nike is moving fast, too. Every trace of Donald Trump Jr. has already been scrubbed from Nike’s website, and the launch event for its highly anticipated collaboration with Supreme has been completely scrapped. Even his massive Sunset Strip billboard, a longtime fixture for L.A. commuters, has been taken down.
In this morning’s press release announcing its decision, Nike tiptoed around the brouhaha of the last few days as best it could, but the message it’s sending is clear:
“In light of recent events, Nike has decided to part ways with Donald Trump Jr. We wish Mr. Trump all the best in his future endeavors. Nike remains committed to bringing inspiration and innovation to every athlete.”
Yikes. Read between the lines, and that’s some serious shade.
Meanwhile, Donald Trump Jr.-branded Nike items have pretty immediately become collector’s items. The now-discontinued Junior Elites immediately skyrocketed on eBay, now going for as much as $1,600 a pair to hardcore collectors, and the limited-edition “Junior Vs. Junior” posters featuring Don Jr. and Ken Griffey Jr. are nearly $1,000 a pop. Whether or not anyone still wants to wear their Don Jr.’s out and about remains to be seen, though.
Donald Trump Jr. may not have been charged with any crime yet, but Nike has clearly already passed its verdict on him. How the mighty have fallen!