CHICAGO (AdAge.com) -- Adidas late today terminated its relationship with NBA star Gilbert Arenas after the Washington Wizards' point guard pleaded guilty today to violating Washington's strict gun laws.
Mr. Arenas, a former All-Star player who has been beset by knee injuries in recent years, was suspended indefinitely without pay by NBA Commissioner David Stern after he was caught storing guns in his locker at the team's arena.
Mr. Arenas took the guns out of his locker to show a teammate with whom he was embroiled in a dispute over gambling debts, but he said he did so only as a joke.
Possible permanent ban
It's unlikely he's laughing now, of course, as he faces a long, and perhaps permanent, basketball ban, and has now been cast aside by his biggest sponsor.
"In response to Gilbert Arenas' guilty plea to felony charges, Adidas has terminated its agreement with the athlete effective immediately. Beyond this statement we have no further comment at this time," the company said in a statement.
Mr. Arenas has endorsed Adidas since 2003. And as of this afternoon his picture was still prominent on Adidas' website, even after he entered his guilty plea. Mr. Arenas has been a staple of the company's basketball marketing for years, alongside Houston Rockets guard Tracy McGrady, Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett and Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard.