There’s no way Sporting Kansas City – having foolishly embraced the seven time Tour de France winner in the middle of his high profile fall from grace – could continue with its Livestrong stadium branding if Armstrong continued on with the cancer charity.
Here’s what I said in August; “Beleaguered cyclist Lance Armstrong needs to fall on his sword and divorce himself from the organization that bears his name, The Lance Armstrong Foundation. The degree of difficulty: extreme. The importance doing so (and quickly): vital.”
But true to Armstrong’s sleazy form, it was far from quick.
The most disgraced sports figure in a lifetime continues to refuse to own up to his now proven drug cheating ways despite a mountain of evidence. Nor was he decent enough to step down from Livestrong, the charity he founded and built with $7 million in ill-gotten gains.
Speaking of which, as recently as last month Armstrong – who until recently remained on Livestrong’s board after stepping down as chairman – stood center stage at the organization’s 15th anniversary gala and got a standing oh from the faithful.
Never mind that celebrity guests Robin Williams, Matthew McConaughey and Norah Jones either no-showed or skipped the red carpet out front and slipped in the back way to avoid being publicly associated with Armstrong.
“It’s been an interesting couple of weeks,” he told the crowd. Interesting.
Why it took Livestrong so long to cut Armstrong loose is an unfortunate mystery.
Now it’s up to Sporting to decide if they wish to continue their shaky voyage aboard cancer’s Titanic and hope for the best…Or make a clean break and affiliate with another charity not harnessed to Armstrong’s name and ruined rep.
They’ve got an out, a mulligan if you will. But I’ll guarantee you if Sporting had it to do over, the name Livestrong would not be affixed to the outside of the local soccer team’s spanking new home.
Armstrong’s finally gone now it remains to be seen how his charity will fare.