Dustin Johnson Explains Adidas Split - 'We Mutually Agreed On Parting Ways'

Dustin Johnson explains that he is looking to find a sponsor for his LIV Golf team the 4 Aces as he cuts ties with Adidas

Dustin Johnson in Mexico at the opening LIV Golf League events of 2023
(Image credit: LIV Golf)

Dustin Johnson has revealed the reason for the end of his 15-year association with Adidas was due to his LIV Golf deal and the hope of attracting a clothing sponsor for his 4 Aces team.

Johnson ended his long run with Adidas just before the start of the second LIV Golf season – which is now rebranded as the LIV Golf League for 2023.

Greg Norman’s Saudi-backed outfit kicks-off the new season in Mexico at Mayakoba's El Camaleon Golf Club, with 12 teams competing over 14 events around the world.

The two-time Major champion says that ending the partnership was a mutual decision between himself and Adidas despite having a sound relationship with the manufacturer over the years.

Johnson added that being tied to one clothing manufacturer at this time was not conducive with the long-term aims of the LIV Golf franchise model, which is hoped will see teams attract individual sponsors for team apparel.

“Obviously I've been with Adidas, I was with them for 15 years. We had a great relationship. It's still really good. We mutually agreed on parting ways,” Johnson said ahead of the LIV Golf League opener.

“It just wasn't working how it was, just with my new - obviously playing for LIV and the way things kind of go. It was better for both of us to part ways.”

Johnson hinted that his 4 Aces may already have a sponsor, but may not be able to showcase it in the opening event in Mexico with his clothes still stuck in customs.

“For me being the captain of the team, obviously being able to go out and find a clothing sponsor is more beneficial than waiting another year. 

“Which we probably will have something - hopefully my clothes get out of customs and I'll have some stuff to wear by this weekend, but if not, I'll be wearing some blank stuff.”

Attracting individual sponsors for the 12 teams is all part of the long-term strategy for LIV Golf, with the belief that eventually these teams will become self sufficient and even attract big-money investors.

LIV Golf has already secured a TV deal with the CW Network, and also signed their first major sponsorships deal with Global shipping logistics company EasyPost.

That will be a relief to the backers at LIV Golf as it aims to become profitable following a report earlier this month that court documents revealed it generated “virtually zero” revenue in its first season.

Paul Higham

Paul Higham is a sports journalist with over 20 years of experience in covering most major sporting events for both Sky Sports and BBC Sport. He is currently freelance and covers the golf majors on the BBC Sport website.  Highlights over the years include covering that epic Monday finish in the Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor and watching Rory McIlroy produce one of the most dominant Major wins at the 2011 US Open at Congressional. He also writes betting previews and still feels strangely proud of backing Danny Willett when he won the Masters in 2016 - Willett also praised his putting stroke during a media event before the Open at Hoylake. Favourite interviews he's conducted have been with McIlroy, Paul McGinley, Thomas Bjorn, Rickie Fowler and the enigma that is Victor Dubuisson. A big fan of watching any golf from any tour, sadly he spends more time writing about golf than playing these days with two young children, and as a big fair weather golfer claims playing in shorts is worth at least five shots. Being from Liverpool he loves the likes of Hoylake, Birkdale and the stretch of tracks along England's Golf Coast, but would say his favourite courses played are Kingsbarns and Portrush.