Warrior has terminated Paul Rabil’s contract with the brand, according to a repot by Scott Soshnick of Bloomberg. According to the report, New Balance Inc – Warrior’s parent company- has stated that the superstar midfielder and co-founder of the Premier Lacrosse League violated the terms of their multimillion dollar contract by wearing a uniform from Adidas during games and practices with Atlas LC.
Rabil was currently under a five-year multi-million dollar contract with Warrior/New Balance that he signed back in February of 2017. The midfielder has been one of the biggest faces of their brand.
This is move by New Balance/Warrior speaks volumes to the feud that is currently going on in professional lacrosse between the PLL and MLL. Warrior founder Dave Morrow is one of the founders of MLL, and New Balance founder/chairman Jim Davis held a high stake in the league, owning four teams until the MLL ceased operations of three teams back in April.
The 33-year old midfielder co-founded the PLL last October with his brother Mike who is the league’s CEO. In April, the PLL announced Adidas as their official apparel and shoe supplier.
Professional lacrosse has had a struggle with players being able to wear another company’s apparel because of their league. In 2010, LXM Pro Tour was formed to battle the issue of the MLL not allowing STX and Maverick athletes to use gear from their sponsor in games. Kyle Harrison was one of the main players involved in LXM Pro, and has also been on the front lines with the PLL as their player recruiter. Harrison also plays midfield for Redwoods LC.
LXM Pro ended in 2014 after they announced a partnership with MLL. From then on pro lacrosse players have been able to use gear and a wear apparel from their sponsor in games, no matter who the league’s primary apparel sponsor is.
Rabil’s situation is very unique as he is not only a player, but also a co-founder of the PLL. In ever other professional sports league players are able to wear another company’s apparel due to league commitments. For instance, Los Angeles Clippers star Kawhai Leonard is a New Balance athlete, but wears Nike uniforms per NBA rules.
In addition, New Balance has done nothing to any of their other athletes that play in the PLL. Atlas LC faceoff man Trevor Baptiste and Archers midfielder Tom Schreiber are just two of around ten players in the league that are sponsored by New Balance.