Shocking only those unfamiliar with the sports marketing world, Nike on Wednesday sanctimoniously terminated its contract with the empty shell of a global brand known as Lance Armstrong.
Nike Chairman Phil Knight said new evidence suggests the champion cyclist “misled Nike for more than a decade.” Prior to the USADA issuing a 1,000-page report last week, Knight said Nike had no reason to believe Armstrong didn’t cleanly win seven Tour de France titles over world-class competition proven to be among the most drug-enhanced athletes in the world.
“We’re shocked. Who’d expect a cancer survivor to lie so well, for so long?” Knight said. “We probably just assumed too much. As they say, when you assume someone didn’t dope, you only make an ass out of... um, someone… and a dope out of... Wait, how does that saying go?
“What I’m trying to say is it’s such a confusing subject. I’m sure this is what helped Lance so easily pull his single-testicle lycra pouch over the whole world’s eyes,” he said. “Obviously, lycra like that will be very difficult to fill. But Nike will persevere with our remaining stable of completely clean world-class athletes.”
Among other victims of Lance Armstrong’s doping are millions of fans who religiously defended him on Internet comment boards by flaming any doubters.
This included Tony Gruntwald, who was such a longtime fan that his rubber LiveStrong wrist band is grayish green. Known within the Reddit online community as HopeAllLanceHatersGetCancer, Gruntwald regularly bashed anyone who even half-suggested the mounting evidence didn’t look good for Lance.
“I’m so angry now. I can’t count all of the lost hours in my darkened basement that I'll never get back,” he said. “In hindsight, I should have spent that time exercising in the fresh air, which would have done far more to reduce my future chances of getting cancer than defending a half-neutered millionaire.”
Equally dispirited was Peter LaFleur, owner/operator of Average Joe’s Gym. In 2004, LaFleur’s underdog team won the national dodgeball championship. As chronicled in the documentary Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story, a chance meeting between Armstrong and LaFleur at a Vegas airport bar proved pivotal to the team’s fortunes.
“I hate how Lance so shamed and inspired me like that. I’m starting to think maybe the ends don’t justify the means,” LaFleur said. “What a fraud. Lance even told me that dodgeball was named after him. When I asked for proof, he simply asked why it then wasn’t called Dodge Balls.”
Nike’s announcement also came amid renewed allegations Nike paid $500,000 to a European cycling official to help cover up a positive steroid test by Armstrong. In response, Nike said it “vehemently denies that it paid... $500,000 to cover up a positive drug test."
Some called this a classic non-denial denial, a charge Nike’s Phil Knight also tried to sidestep Wednesday.
“I’m personally offended anyone would suggest I’m capable of a non-denial denial. I won’t even dignify that with a real denial, but I will evasively remind everyone that Nike is one of the most principled corporate citizens in the world. Just ask the thousands of children in Pakistan and Cambodia to whom we provided desperately needed work-study jobs. Name one other company with that kind of a record?"
Related Performance Enhancing Drug news from the FluffingtonPost:
SkitSketchJeff is Jeff Burdick, who wishes more athletes competed cleanly with testosterone levels no higher than four times the human average, as allowed by international rules.
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