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News summary: Cos. walk a fine line with celebs

PUTTING ITS FOOT DOWN: Nike Inc. has stood by athletes through a number of scandals over the years, but this week it became the first company to sever ties with Armstrong in the wake of allegations that he used illegal drugs to boost his performance.

HIGH FIVE: At least five other companies followed Nike's lead, highlighting the tricky relationship that evolves when marketers sign multimillion-dollar endorsement deals.

GOT SOLE: `'Nike is about `just doing it' and that doesn't mean drugs," said marketing consultant Laura Ries. "It means hard work and ethics and this flew in the face of it."