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Why does every new club look like a Nike iron


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From Ping to Srixon to TM, why does every new iron look like it had a baby with a Nike Vapor series iron?  Was Nike a few years too early?  Would they still be around if everyone realized what they were on to?

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Nike sold plenty, and made positive returns.  They just didn't sell enough for them to care about keeping the line open.  Nike is so big, it didn't make them enough money to care.

Nope, they had the best Tour players on their staff and they couldn't sell equipment. Equipment couldn't have been that great.

Nike has done this quite a few times. Either get out before it's too expensive, or sell it off.   Nikes hardware is legit and they had the best guys building and designing (ever hear of Arti

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You could argue that Nike design was indeed ahead of the curve. Although there are models from the past that have a similar weight distribution pattern, weighting towards the toe-Wilson Staff Tour Blade and other Wilson models, Several Hogan models and I'm sure many others that don't mirror the specific look and shape pf the Nike Vapor as much.

Ping G410 Plus 10.5°/Alta CB55 r flex, Maltby KE4 TC 5w/Xcaliber SL FW r flex, Maltby KE4 ST-H 3h/Xcaliber HY r flex, Maltby KE4 ST-H 4h/Xcaliber HY r flex, Maltby KE4 Tour TC 5h/Xcaliber Rapid Taper r flex, Maltby KE4 Tour+ 6-G/Xcaliber Rapid Taper r flex, Maltby Tricept 54° and 58°/Xcaliber Rapid Taper r flex, Mizuno Bettinardi C06

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I really liked my Vapor Combos, but I don't see the similarities in the other irons. I mean, a cavity back is pretty much a club with a cavity in the back. It's not some secret Nike came up with.

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Taylormade M3 driver Mitsubishi Kuro Kage TiNi 70G shaft (cut to 44.5")

Taylormade M1 5 wood

Taylormade M4 19* Hybrid 

Taylormade GAPR Mid 21* Hybrid

KZG Forged 2-M cavity back 4-6 

KZG Forged Blade 7-PW

Mitsubishi Kuro Kage 80g iron shafts

Lazrus 52/8 and 56/12 wedges

Tour "Percision" [sic] Milled TP-M5 putter

Golf Pride Concept Helix grips

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18 minutes ago, Simmer7 said:

 

Nope, they had the best Tour players on their staff and they couldn't sell equipment. Equipment couldn't have been that great.

They’re players were great and won a lot so the equipment must have been great

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Ping G410 Plus 10.5°/Alta CB55 r flex, Maltby KE4 TC 5w/Xcaliber SL FW r flex, Maltby KE4 ST-H 3h/Xcaliber HY r flex, Maltby KE4 ST-H 4h/Xcaliber HY r flex, Maltby KE4 Tour TC 5h/Xcaliber Rapid Taper r flex, Maltby KE4 Tour+ 6-G/Xcaliber Rapid Taper r flex, Maltby Tricept 54° and 58°/Xcaliber Rapid Taper r flex, Mizuno Bettinardi C06

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20 minutes ago, Simmer7 said:

 

Nope, they had the best Tour players on their staff and they couldn't sell equipment. Equipment couldn't have been that great.

Actually have to disagree with that.  Their equipment was pretty damn good for their era.  I will admit that their earliest offers were mediocre.  Their vapor line of irons were exceptional and the woods were pretty good.  Nike was losing out to the big boys equipment wise and wisely chose to stick with their clothing line. 

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TM Tour Issue Deep Face Ghost Proto TP 2 HB  w/Thump 105x

New Level NLU-01 21* w/KBS Proto 105x

New Level 623-M 5-PW w/MMT 125 TX

54* Miura HB w/KBS 610 S+, 58* Miura w/KBS Tour Black

Scotty Cameron Studio Select Newport 1

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, lefthack said:

I really liked my Vapor Combos, but I don't see the similarities in the other irons. I mean, a cavity back is pretty much a club with a cavity in the back. It's not some secret Nike came up with.

The Vapor Pro Combos were really nice! Also agree with your take about similarities. 

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14 minutes ago, TiScape said:

The Vapor Pro Combos were really nice! Also agree with your take about similarities. 

 

While I liked the Vapors, I will say the VR Pro Combos looked WAY better. Not sure if I played any better with them, but the looked amazing. But it's a basic, clean design.

Taylormade M3 driver Mitsubishi Kuro Kage TiNi 70G shaft (cut to 44.5")

Taylormade M1 5 wood

Taylormade M4 19* Hybrid 

Taylormade GAPR Mid 21* Hybrid

KZG Forged 2-M cavity back 4-6 

KZG Forged Blade 7-PW

Mitsubishi Kuro Kage 80g iron shafts

Lazrus 52/8 and 56/12 wedges

Tour "Percision" [sic] Milled TP-M5 putter

Golf Pride Concept Helix grips

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I've said for years that Nike got tons of undeserved hate. They were the new kids on the block in the equipment game and dared to not appear "traditional," which largely pissed off the get off my lawn crew. I saw a ton of younger guys, myself included, playing Nike equipment because it was new and "cool." Unfortunately, we weren't the ones with the disposable income to support a company. I still get out my Vr Pro blades occasionally, and I STILL think they're some of my favorite irons I've used, I just don't have the time to have the game to play them all the time anymore. 

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3 hours ago, Bad9 said:

They’re players were great and won a lot so the equipment must have been great

I can't disagree with the wins, you're right there.

 

But if Nike can't sell something that's great then no one can.  Maybe I was a little harsh, it's possible the equipment wasn't playable for the masses and that's why it didn't translate into sales.

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28 minutes ago, Simmer7 said:

I can't disagree with the wins, you're right there.

 

But if Nike can't sell something that's great then no one can.  Maybe I was a little harsh, it's possible the equipment wasn't playable for the masses and that's why it didn't translate into sales.

 

If you talk to anybody that worked selling golf stuff and ask about Nike, they all say the same thing. Old guys didn't trust it, so it didn't sell. Folks who bought it and played it tend to like it. But the loud colors and crazy ideas were too much for the older crowe and that's where the money is.

 

Golf isn't quite the same as cars. Tiger won on Sunday, but Nike still didn't sell on Monday.

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Taylormade M3 driver Mitsubishi Kuro Kage TiNi 70G shaft (cut to 44.5")

Taylormade M1 5 wood

Taylormade M4 19* Hybrid 

Taylormade GAPR Mid 21* Hybrid

KZG Forged 2-M cavity back 4-6 

KZG Forged Blade 7-PW

Mitsubishi Kuro Kage 80g iron shafts

Lazrus 52/8 and 56/12 wedges

Tour "Percision" [sic] Milled TP-M5 putter

Golf Pride Concept Helix grips

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16 minutes ago, lefthack said:

 

If you talk to anybody that worked selling golf stuff and ask about Nike, they all say the same thing. Old guys didn't trust it, so it didn't sell. Folks who bought it and played it tend to like it. But the loud colors and crazy ideas were too much for the older crowe and that's where the money is.

 

Golf isn't quite the same as cars. Tiger won on Sunday, but Nike still didn't sell on Monday.

I'll take your word for the car analogy as I'm not a car guy or a Motorsport fan.

 

All I know is golfers will buy anything that's better or they think will improve their game and at the end of the day Nike was not successful selling golf clubs. 

 

Anyhow, we all have different views which is what forums are all about. Keeps us golf crazy people entertained.

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, Golfrnut said:

 

Nike sold plenty, and made positive returns.  They just didn't sell enough for them to care about keeping the line open.  Nike is so big, it didn't make them enough money to care.

 

The margin on hard goods vs soft goods is HUGE. They make a pair of sneakers for $5 that sells for $200+. The SB Dunk is the same shoe they have made since '85 with no new tech or anything but funky colors in limited numbers and they sell out every time. 

 

SB's then sell for up to $25k aftermarket. You won't see that in golf. The Gold Bear Miuras are trying to sell for $5k.

 

<edit> hell jordan makes more selling golf shoes than a lot of pros make period  🤣

Edited by lefthack
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Taylormade M3 driver Mitsubishi Kuro Kage TiNi 70G shaft (cut to 44.5")

Taylormade M1 5 wood

Taylormade M4 19* Hybrid 

Taylormade GAPR Mid 21* Hybrid

KZG Forged 2-M cavity back 4-6 

KZG Forged Blade 7-PW

Mitsubishi Kuro Kage 80g iron shafts

Lazrus 52/8 and 56/12 wedges

Tour "Percision" [sic] Milled TP-M5 putter

Golf Pride Concept Helix grips

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Nike had some great playing equipment but carried a stigma of “they only make sneakers.” I played some of my beat golf with an all Nike bag. From the LE driver and woods, pro combo irons, VR wedges (the OG ones that chewed up balls), and the Method 001... man, those were good times for me. 

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Posted (edited)

They always had great forged irons, hard to debate that.  But their woods were always very lack luster in performance against the others.

Edited by PEI_Golfer
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Titleist TS3 19* AV Blue 75X

Ping I500 4i, I210 5-U TI S400

Cleveland RTX Zipcore 50M/54M/58L TI S400

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10 hours ago, glm said:

IMO

They payed out more $ in contracts then they were taking in and when golf took a dump somebody with a brain pulled the plug.

 

Nike hard goods/ clubs were profitable, high single digit to low double digits every year.  Just not in the 25 to 30% range that was expected.    

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Mizuno T20 51* 54* 60* TT x-100
Callaway PM Grind 64*
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9 hours ago, PEI_Golfer said:

They always had great forged irons, hard to debate that.  But their woods were always very lack luster in performance against the others.

I think there are a still a few tour pros with Nike fairway woods in their bags today.  My backup bag is a Nike I bought on clearance.  It's just waiting for my MCB to wear out and that doesn't seem be anytime soon.  

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8 minutes ago, LeoLeo99 said:

I think there are a still a few tour pros with Nike fairway woods in their bags today.  My backup bag is a Nike I bought on clearance.  It's just waiting for my MCB to wear out and that doesn't seem be anytime soon.  

 

 

That still isn't a ringing endorsement.  I know people will be fond of a couple drivers and a fairway here or there, but between weak shaft options and better alternatives, it was never their strongest area compared to their forged irons.

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Titleist TS2 16.5* Fuji Pro 2.0 7X

Titleist TS3 19* AV Blue 75X

Ping I500 4i, I210 5-U TI S400

Cleveland RTX Zipcore 50M/54M/58L TI S400

Odyssey Tank V-Line 35"

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11 hours ago, desaille said:

All the other companies swooped up Nike patents and designs 

and now are incorporating them 

 

If other companies swooshed up, Nike would have sued them for trademark infringement...

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13 hours ago, nostatic said:

Looks to me like Nike saw Honeycomb irons in the early 70's:

 

 

Screen Shot 2021-05-04 at 6.29.17 PM.png

I had a set of those back in 1979. Well ahead of their time for weight distribution amd forgiveness.

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2 hours ago, LeoLeo99 said:

I think there are a still a few tour pros with Nike fairway woods in their bags today.  My backup bag is a Nike I bought on clearance.  It's just waiting for my MCB to wear out and that doesn't seem be anytime soon.  

They made some great fairway models but honestly they whiffed on the drivers. Their drivers just never sold well. Driver sales are the engine for overall club sales and Nike just never got the driver to go well. Not saying their drivers weren’t good they just didn’t sell. In the end, golf hardwoods were a fly spec on Nikes radar and it wasn’t worth the investment. They are still a huge player in golf with shoes and apparel and I’m sure their golf market share didn’t change much by ditching hard goods. 

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26 minutes ago, mogc60 said:

They made some great fairway models but honestly they whiffed on the drivers. Their drivers just never sold well. Driver sales are the engine for overall club sales and Nike just never got the driver to go well. Not saying their drivers weren’t good they just didn’t sell. In the end, golf hardwoods were a fly spec on Nikes radar and it wasn’t worth the investment. They are still a huge player in golf with shoes and apparel and I’m sure their golf market share didn’t change much by ditching hard goods. 

 

I think Tiger used a SQ 3 wood for a while and even went back to it at one point. As fussy as he is about hardware, the fact he played Nike and played it well either speaks to the clubs or the $$$.

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Taylormade M3 driver Mitsubishi Kuro Kage TiNi 70G shaft (cut to 44.5")

Taylormade M1 5 wood

Taylormade M4 19* Hybrid 

Taylormade GAPR Mid 21* Hybrid

KZG Forged 2-M cavity back 4-6 

KZG Forged Blade 7-PW

Mitsubishi Kuro Kage 80g iron shafts

Lazrus 52/8 and 56/12 wedges

Tour "Percision" [sic] Milled TP-M5 putter

Golf Pride Concept Helix grips

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