Adidas’ Dustin Johnson Leads PGA Championship

Dustin Johnson
The Adidas golfer took an early lead at the PGA Championship on Thursday.
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When Jordan Spieth does well, it is good business for Under Armour. Now Adidas is hoping to have similar good fortune with its longtime sponsored golfer Dustin Johnson.

Johnson, who the German athletic company hopes will help its ailing golf business, claimed an early lead at the US PGA Championship Thursday. He shot a smooth, six-under 66.

It is not the first time Johnson has jumped out to a first round lead in a major tournament this year. He held the frontrunner position at both the U.S. Open and British Open.

Johnson, who has nine PGA titles but has yet to claim his first major, eventually fell to the 21-year-old Spieth at the U.S. Open. (Spieth’s victory also served as big win for Under Armour and its new golf cleat, the UA Drive One. The cleat, which Spieth wore throughout the tournament, sold out in record time.)

Johnson, a big-hitting South Carolinian, has been on a hot streak of sorts, having finished in the top five spots in several tournaments in 2015.

If Johnson continues to play well at the US PGA Championship, it would be considered a long road back, by most accounts, for the 31-year-old, who has battled injuries in recent years and even a short time away from the tour in 2014 for personal reasons.

Johnson is endored by Adidas’ TaylorMade division, along with other top tour players such as Justin Rose and Sergio Garcia.