Jason Day has a new apparel sponsorship and has left Nike, moving the needle even further on rumors that the Checkmark is potentially on its way out of the golf business.
Day, who has worn Nike since 2016 and joined the company after leaving Adidas, has signed with Malbon Golf, a premium lifestyle brand that offers some of the cleanest and most modern styles in the game.
Day and Malbon made it official with a promotional spot that was released last weekend. He is just the latest golfer to surge rumors that Nike is on its way out of golf.
As Tiger Woods cryptically answered questions regarding his future with Nike during the PNC Championship in December, there are plenty of indications that the company could be sunsetting its golf division. Although Nike has been one of the biggest brands in golf since signing Woods in 1996, a number of smaller companies have burst onto the scene and have landed major partnerships with the world’s best players.
Greyson landed Justin Thomas a few years back after he parted ways with Ralph Lauren, which was the start of smaller brands landing huge names. Travis Mathew has some major names wearing its products, including Jon Rahm, who recently left the PGA Tour for LIV Golf.
As Nike and Adidas both decided to end the production of golf equipment eight years ago, nobody could have guessed that they would be potentially on their way out of the massive golf market, especially considering the sport has done nothing but grow since the 2020 pandemic. An influx of smaller brands that offer fresh, hip, and modern styles has overtaken the market, and individualism has perhaps overtaken the focus on affordability.
These smaller brands have seen major increases in profitability and revenue thanks to the growth of golf over the past four years, and now we are beginning to see these brands get huge names to sign with them.
As golf’s landscape continues to change, it will be interesting to see where the biggest names land moving forward, especially Woods, who has been the main driver of Nike’s status in golf.