EA Sports, Nike Cut Ties With Ray Rice

Posted: Sep 9 2014, 5:24pm CDT | by , in News

 
EA Sports, Nike Cut Ties With Ray Rice
Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports
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Local Businesses Offer Jersey Turn-Ins.

EA Sports made an announcement on Tuesday that Ray Rice would be removed sometime later in the week off of "Madden NFL 15" as the fallout continues from new video footage of his domestic violence assault.

Rice was suspended indefinitely from the NFL and cut from the Baltimore Ravens' line-up on Monday after a video surfaced of him attacking his now-wife in an elevator.

Nike also released a statement saying that it had severed ties and the contract that Rice had with the company.

Nike spokesman KeJuan Wilkins confirmed to ESPN.com that as of noon ET Tuesday, the former Ravens running back, who had an active deal with the company, was no longer on the roster of the world's largest sports shoe and apparel maker.

The contract being severed is a rare move for Nike, who continued to keep contracts with Kobe Bryant, Lance Armstrong, and Michael Vick after each of their incidents had come to public light.

Rice will be removed from Madden through an online roster update, as the game has already been released.

"With Ray Rice's indefinite suspension from the NFL, he will be removed from 'Madden NFL 15,'" EA Sports communications director Julie Foster said. "This roster change will take place by this Friday."

The Ravens have also announced that will allow fans to exchange their Ray Rice jerseys, which are no longer for sale on the NFL shop. Stores such as Dick's Sporting Goods have also decided to pull Rice's jersey off their selves.

Local residents in Baltimore have been given the ability to dispose of jerseys with Rice's name and number. A local pizza parlor, Hersh's Pizza in South Baltimore, is offering free pizza in exchange for Rice jerseys.

Stephanie Hershkovitz, one of Hersh's owners, said the idea was to get Rice jerseys off the street. "It's kind of like a gun buy-back program," she told CNN affiliate WBAL.

Hersh's had received 50 jerseys as of last night, and will accept them all week.

One disillusioned Ravens fan said she and her son had planned to burn their Rice jerseys, but changed their minds when they learned about the free pizza offer.

"We've had these jerseys for four or five years, and it doesn't mean anything to have to give them up," the fan said. "I'm done with Ray Rice."

Another local establishment, the No Idea Tavern, said on Twitter that anyone who "surrenders" their Ray Rice jersey will receive a $10 bar tab. "No. Questions. Asked," the tweet specifies.

Smyth Jewelers, which has three locations in Maryland, is offering store credit to customers who purchased Ray Rice merchandise. The store sells charms, earrings and cufflinks emblazoned with the Ravens logo.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/37" rel="author">Jason Brumett</a>
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