Mar 5, 2010, 3:00 PM EDT
Oh, the Irony Police are going to want to investigate this: Tiger Woods, apparently not willing to tarnish his good name by having it connected to a sports betting site, has turned down a multimillion-dollar offer from Paddy Power, one of the world’s biggest wagering houses. The Irish bookmaker revealed today that Tiger’s representatives at IMG have rejected a $75 million, five-year sponsorship deal. Paddy Power responded of course by saying that it would be back with a revamped offer. Yeah, you pretty much have to double down if you’re a gambling site.
See, Gatorade? Tiger doesn’t need you! You either, AT&T! All he needs is this paddle ball game, and this chair. And that’s ALL he needs!
Of course, I have a pretty good clue as to why Tiger turned this down. Wasn’t it just hours after Woods crashed his SUV on Thanksgiving night that Paddy Power had posted odds on a potential divorce with wife Elin Nordegren? Yeah. Tiger has a funny way of remembering things like that.
Paddy Power’s approach, which a spokesman described as “100% serious and not a publicity stunt,” may test Woods’ worth in the wake of the sex scandal and IMG’s rejection of the initial offer shows they’re prepared to defend that value.
“He’s unquestionably the world’s biggest sports star … Tiger’s a big brand and name. He’s up there with the Pepsi Colas and Coca Colas,” the Paddy Power spokesman said, adding that a deal would also be performance-related as to the number of major tournaments Woods wins.
Paddy Power is a big player on the sports betting scene; they were at EUR23.80 on the Irish Stock Exchange today, compared to EUR12.10 this time last year, according to NASDAQ.com. They aren’t above throwing around money for publicity’s sake, either. Perhaps you’ll recall that in August, they paid out $2.12 million when they prematurely declared Woods the winner in the PGA Championship. Woods eventually lost to Y.E. Yang of South Korea.
Paddy Power Chases Tiger Woods Sponsorship, Initial Deal Rejected [NASDAQ.com]
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