Despite suitors, McIlroy to stick with Nike - for now


FARMINGDALE, N.Y. – Rory McIlroy hasn’t been back to Northern Ireland in the last few weeks, but that hasn’t stopped potential suitors from attempting to catch his eye in the wake of Nike’s decision to exit the golf equipment business.

“Apparently my parents’ house has been inundated with golf equipment from different manufacturers,” McIlroy said Wednesday at The Barclays. “I haven’t asked for it, but it’s there.”

So it goes for Nike’s second most high-profile golfer, who made a splash when signing with the company in early 2013. McIlroy now has plenty of options should he want to change his clubs, and he’s putting a new Scotty Cameron putter into his bag this week after a disastrous outing on the greens at the PGA Championship.

But McIlroy has also stockpiled a three-year supply of Nike golf balls, and after taking nearly a full year to adjust to his Nike equipment the first time around, he doesn’t plan to undergo extensive equipment changes anytime soon.

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“I’m happy with everything right now. I don’t think it’s the time or the place to change what I feel like I’m very comfortable with,” McIlroy said. “I don’t really expect to sign with anyone next year. I’d rather just have a year of going and playing what I want and being comfortable, and if I come across something that I really like and I’m really comfortable with, obviously I’ll look to sign a longer-term deal.”

McIlroy didn’t hear of Nike’s decision until two hours before it was announced publicly, and he described their decision to exit the equipment space as “a shock to all of us.” But Nike still has plans to remain in golf apparel and footwear, and McIlroy has no plans to leave the company itself.

“I fully expect to stay with Nike for a long time,” he said. “They are a great company to work with. I’ve had a really good experience with them.”