With Nike leaving the equipment business, two of the Biggest names in golf, Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods, have been searching for new equipment deals.
One player, who is not running from Nike, but to it, is world No. 1 Jason Day. Day’s contract with Taylormade/Adidas was fulfilled, but he decided to stay with Taylormade equipment. He did, however, decide to switch from wearing Adidas apparel to the Nike Swoosh for his shirts, pants and shoes.
Adidas, the parent company of Taylormade, is making a conscious effort to cut back on all golf related marketing and Day simply got a better offer from Nike.
“Joining Nike is a dream come true,” Day said. “The brand is synonymous with the world’s best athletes. I’m honored and can’t wait to be part of the team and working closely with Nike to take my game, and the sport of golf, to even higher levels.”
One of the reason’s switching to Nike is a “Dream Come True” for Day has been revealed by ESPN’s Darren Rovell, who reported that Day will make upwards of $10 million a year for donning the swoosh on his wardrobe. Even after taxes, that’s still a nice number.
This means that three of the biggest names in Golf, Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, & Jason Day will all be sporting the Nike Swoosh in 2017.
Speaking of Rory, who along with Tiger was Nike’s leading spokesmen for the brand, has named Callaway as his choice of clubs for the 2017 season.
If you remember Nike staged a massive televised spectacle in Dubai, when Rory originally signed his $200 million deal with Nike in 2014. He struggled to find the right combination of shafts, heads and ball to find fairways, greens and birdies. He is going to keep receiving a nice check from Nike even though, he will be playing another brand.
Rory, will play Callaway’s new Great Big Bertha Epic Sub Zero driver, Custom Apex MB Irons, Titleist Vokey wedges, an Odyssey putter and the Titleist Pro V1x ball in his 2017 debut at the BMW South African Open on Jan. 12.
He had such a great finish to 2016, which promised a return to prominence this season, we hope the new sticks doesn’t derail his stellar performance.
In early December at the Hero World Challenge, the original Nike guy, Woods had a TaylorMade M2 driver, TaylorMade M1 fairway woods, Nike irons and wedges, and a Titleist Scotty Cameron putter in his bag. He used a Bridgestone B330-S ball and has signed an endorsement contract with Bridgestone.
Golfweek reported one of the more surprising equipment changes comes from Bubba Watson, who is switching from a Titleist Pro V1 to a Volvik golf ball.
Bubba will be launching is patented sky sweeping drives with a Volvik White Color S4, which Bubba calls the “Blue Pearl,” and he will wear the company’s logo on the sleeve of his shirt.
Watson is the biggest name to ever play a Volvik ball. Craig Stadler and Tim Petrovic have used the Volvik balls in the past. The colored Volvik golf ball has had a huge presence on the LPGA Tour, with several women using Volvik for their choice of golf ball.
Bubba says he got the idea to try the ball, while lounging on his couch watching the World Long Drive Competition on television.
As the guys hit the range this week at Kapalua there will be a rash of news on club changes, endorsement deals and players leaving old sponsors for new, but these are the biggest names and what we know thus far.