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Olympic Hero Mark Spitz -- My Image Got JACKED!

4/27/2011 5:15 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Swimming legend Mark Spitz claims a swimwear company is soaking him -- using his image to sell gear WITHOUT paying him a cent ... so now he's suing.

0427_spitz_ex_getty

Spitz -- who famously won 7 gold medals at the '72 games -- filed the lawsuit today in L.A. County Superior Court against Arena USA ... a company he says he had an endorsement deal with from '77 through '82.

In the lawsuit, Spitz claims Arena has continued using his image to "create the impression that Spitz endorses defendants' products and business."

Mark's attorney tells us the Olympic legend recently saw a pic of himself sporting his 7 golds on Arena's website. We checked ... and the photo is no longer on the site.

Spitz is suing for unspecified damages.


For more sports stories, check out tmzsports.com!
18 COMMENTS

No Avatar
1.

kingborg    

instant cash! ya use an image without permission instant free publicity. aka $$$$$$$$$$$$$$

1189 days ago
2.

If sense were common everyone would have it.    

Companies are famous for this. If no one squawks, they get away with it. Ben & Jerry's tried with Jerry Garcia, & he wasn't going to do anything til one of his friends convinced him. Goes on with musicians' songs too. As long as they can get away with it, they will. Hope Mark gets all that's due him.

1189 days ago
3.

en Todo Momento!!    

oh come on. that swim underwear is soooooh damn tiny, the company has to make up for their sponsorship somehow. no one even ever saw their logo!! grow some bigger ones next time.

1189 days ago
4.

Peaches    

OMG OMG OMG! ! ! ! ..........THIS IS SUCH BIG NEWS.........! ? GEEZ PEOPLE.......SEE YA TMZ...WHAT'S UP PEREZ! ! !

1189 days ago
5.

THIN LIZZY    

No one got jacked harder than ALI

1189 days ago
6.

Sloane    

in my mind Spitz is the best swimmer ever-better than Michael Phelps

when you figure he did it in a day when the athletes weren't being paid millions of dollars-
they had to work a regular job in order to support themselves and train on top of that-they weren't pampered

today they can practice 24/7 and afford the top fitness experts/physio/doctors...and that's not even mentioning that Spitz did it basically in a speedo - not some high tech outfit
and with a nice head of hair and moustache!!
now they even shave off their body hair!

and if you don't think he was under tons more stress think again--- the 72 Olympics is where Palestinian terrorist had kidnapped and then murdered 11 Jewish athletes and officials

Spitz, being high profile because of his accomplishments there -and because he was Jewish was considered to be a possible target as well

it was a different time for sure, so to me his accomplishments will always overshadow those of Phelps

even physically Spitz has a normal body frame-like most all of us-proportionate

where Phelps frame-long unusual upper body and larger lung capacity (medically stated facts) and short lower body (if you've never noticed take a second look at potos of him) gave him an advantage over the other competetors who had proportionate bodies

I could go on making my case for Spitz being the best...
my opinion and nothing will change my mind

if Spitz and Phelps were the same age-given the same millions, training advantages, suits etc. my money would be on Spitz

1189 days ago
7.

keepinitrealincali    

@ Sloane --- Well said! And I totally agree. I remember being not quite 12 years old watching Spitz make history at the '72 Munich Olympics. His feat will forever be etched in my mind as one of those fond childhood memories.

1189 days ago
8.

Sloane    

@keepinitrealincali -- glad you agree! and boy are you ever younger than I am - sad to say...

1189 days ago
9.

kingborg    

best exp of this is ihop the food place vs ihop the cult eerr church

1189 days ago
10.

Stiletto    

I feel sad for Spitz. No, he did not get big money back in '72...but he has been complaining and whining about 1 thing or another for well over 30 years.

1189 days ago
11.

feebee    

OMG... I hate to see all these people get old... I don't even recognize them, sad, sad, sad

1189 days ago
12.

Canadasux    

In '72, Mark Spitz was "'da' Man!" I hope he gets every cent he can, plus punitive damages.

1189 days ago
13.

Harveys boyfriend    

@rocky, that was greg luganus the high diver who hit his head and was knocked unconscious he was Gladd he wasn't seriously injured or killed. Mark spitz had the mustache like magnum PI and had the famous photo of him in American flag speedos .I think your Gadar got them confused both are playing for the other team.

SWEET CHEEKS xoxoxo

1189 days ago
14.

electriczipper    

sooo he will only support the product if they give him money...lame

1189 days ago
15.

Harveys boyfriend    

@rocky ,
what happened to your avatar how can tmz jack it.I think graphic images of a guy banging another guy in his ass missionary position is a little over "the TOP" ...

1189 days ago
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