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Oakley sues McIlroy, Nike in contract dispute

The SportsXchange

Oakley has filed a breach of contract lawsuit against Rory McIlroy and Nike, according to a report.

Oakley, an apparel and sunglasses manufacturer who had sponsored of the world's top-ranked golfer, claimed in a suit filed Dec. 10 in federal court in Santa Ana, Calif., that it had a "right of first refusal" in its contract with McIlroy. It also argued that he and his agent, Conor Ridge, ignored a counteroffer to match Nike's bid, ESPN.com reported.

Oakley had signed McIlroy through Dec. 31.

The deal with Nike is reported to be $200 million. Oakley's suit says its offer to McIlroy would be 30 percent of the Nike package, which factors out to about $60 million.

Oakley further claimed that it would suffer "irreparable" damage from McIlroy's refusal to renew his contract and that they have the right to seek an injunction to stop Nike and McIlroy from completing an agreement, ESPN.com reported. Oakley also said it invested $300,000 for photos of products that McIlroy was to endorse in 2013.

"McIlroy has fulfilled all of his obligations to Oakley and the claims in the lawsuit are entirely baseless," McIlroy's management company, Horizon Sports Management, told ESPN.com.
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