The worst-kept secret in golf is out of the bag.
Nike, which outside of Tiger Woods has made a string of bad bets in golf sponsorship -- from David Duval to Anthony Kim -- hopes to turn its fortunes around by pegging its future in the sport to Rory McIlroy.
The ubiquitous Swoosh, which has relied almost entirely on Woods to drive its golf product, announced on Monday a deal with his emerging young rival that has been reported to be worth as much as $200 million.
Several insiders have told me that number's inflated, but even if it's half of that sum, the affable 23-year-old Northern Irishman has financially secured his future.
So in that sense, it was, as they say, a no-brainer for McIlroy, who joins a stable that includes such top-of-the-mountain stars as Derek Jeter, Roger Federer, Adrian Peterson, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Cristiano Ronaldo.
"I've always associated Nike with the best," McIlroy said at a no-expense-spared unveiling in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, where...