Nike Backs Lance Armstrong Amid Doping Scandal

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Even though Lance Armstrong has dropped his fight against the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (UADA) on claims he cheated throughout his career and will give up his seven Tour de France wins, he won't have to give up one of his biggest endorsers.

Nike ( NKE) said it continues to stand by Armstrong despite the claims that he took performance-enhancing drugs during his racing career.

"Lance has stated his innocence and has been unwavering on this position. Nike plans to continue to support Lance and the Lance Armstrong Foundation, a foundation that Lance created to serve cancer survivors," the Beaverton, Ore.-based company said in a statement obtained by Reuters.

Armstrong has never publicly failed a drug test, but the former cyclist nevertheless decided it was time to give up the fight. "Enough is enough," Armstrong quipped, when talking about the ongoing battle between him and the agency. The UADA took away Armstrong's titles, and he is now banned from cycling.

Armstrong and Nike have a long history together, which stems in part from Armstrong being a cancer survivor. Armstrong's cancer organization, Livestrong, works with Nike to help raise money and created the Livestrong wristbands and line of clothing.

Nike shares were rising nearly 2% to $97.06 in afternoon trades.

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-- Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York

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