LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Retribution continues to hit former Baltimore Ravens star Ray Rice head on after a video that emerged Monday resulted in his release from the team and an indefinite suspension from the NFL.
The video, previously unseen by parties involved, shows Rice in an elevator, striking his then-fiance, current-wife Janay Rice, with his left fist, knocking her head into a handrail, and rendering her unconscious.
In addition to Monday’s increased punishments from the team and the league, Rice is now also seeing corporate endorsements jump ship, much the way Donald Sterling did after his racial tirade was released on an audio tape.
In addition to Body Armor Sports Drink and Vertimax Sports Training Equipment, EA Sports announced that Rice’s likeness will be removed from the popular NFL video game franchise, Madden NFL.
USC marketing professor Ira Kalb told CBS2’s Jeff Nguyen that the move was expected, and was absolutely necessary from a business standpoint.
“They have to do it. If they don’t, they’ll be tainted by the negative things that he’s done,” Kalb said.
Kalb continued to suggest that EA also had something of a moral obligation to remove Rice from the game, given the fact that the franchise is marketed toward young men.
“I think it’s important to send a message to young people, because these athletes are heroes to young people, and if they do a bad thing, I think it’s right for these companies to take a position,” Kalb said.