Sunday, April 29, 2012

Nike: LeBron designer's tweets on Rose

UPDATE: Nike said Sunday that sneaker designer Jason Petrie's tweets seeming to mock Derrick Rose's injury -- and suggesting he would not have torn his ACL if he was wearing Nike basketball shoes instead of Adidas -- were "inappropriate."

Said spokesman Brian Strong in a statement: "As a brand that is passionate about sport, we recognize the intense level of play that every athlete has engaged in during this basketball season and respect the dedication it takes to compete. One of our basketball footwear designers posted comments online that we feel are inappropriate, and he has since apologized. We wish anyone who is injured a speedy recovery."

PREVIOUS: The designer behind LeBron James' Nike shoes has sparked outrage on the Internet by seeming to mock Derrick Rose's season-ending knee injury on Twitter -- and suggesting Rose would not have been hurt if he had worn Nike basketball sneakers instead of Adidas.

Senior footwear designer Jason Petrie tweeted the 23-year old Rose "chose poorly" and "#shouldasignedwithNIKE #GWS (Get well soon)" after the Chicago Bulls superstar and reigning NBA MVP tore knee ligaments during his club's first-round playoff game against the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday in Chicago.

"Jason Petrie has as much class as LeBron has rings," wrote one tweeter. Another tweeted Petrie has "no respect for the game or its warriors."

Sunday Nike spokesman Brian Strong confirmed the tweets were from Petrie but declined further comment. In February, Rose signed a 14-year contract extension to be the face of Adidas basketball. His new deal could net him as much as $260 million over the course of his NBA career.

Petrie did tweet somewhat of an apology Sunday: "Wow! Twitterverse I do apologize. It was really just tongue n cheek! Never meant any harm or disrespect! "

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