Kevin Durant’s Commercial Success
If you watch a good amount of ESPN or have tuned in to any NBA game during these playoffs on ABC or TNT, you can’t help but see Kevin Durant’s newest Gatorade commercial. It seems to be in an every-other-commercial-break rotation. Durant and the Thunder are getting major face time.
Looks like we better get used to seeing Durant dominating our commercial breaks. This latest Gatorade spot is the most prominent promotional ad Durant has ever had. And they figure to only keep coming as Durant and the Thunder continue to get better and go farther in the NBA playoffs.
An interesting exercise, though, is looking back on Durant’s collection of commercials. It’s a library that has quietly, but quickly, become rather extensive. Take a look at the collection I’ve included below. As a side exercise, notice how much more Durant’s body has filled out in some of the newer spots versus the earlier ones. Enjoy.
Durant’s first commercial!! OK, so this wasn’t really shot in 2005. It was fancy camera work that gave the impression it was filmed during Durant’s high school days. It began airing around Christmas 2010. The NBA did a fantastic job with this one, nonetheless.
A real blast from the past and one of the most effective spots Durant has been in. As he walks through the tunnel toward the court as a rookie with the Seattle SuperSonics, you can almost feel Durant coming of age. Perhaps no commercial captures how young and physically underdeveloped Durant was when he first entered the league.
Who’s that guy in a Wizards jersey? Why does he call himself ‘Hibachi’ in the end? What’s that? There once was a guy named Gilbert Arenas who was an All-Star? He was once one of the best point guards in the league? No way. Well what the heck happened to him? Long story, you say? I’ll take your word for it. Wait, what? He wasn’t acting on defense in this commercial? Players blew by him with ease in real life, too? Are you sure this guy was an All-Star?
This Arenas guy again? I’m starting to believe he was pretty special. But what’s this business about him being the ‘Shoot button’ and wanting to ‘Take it to the hoop every time?’ I thought he was a point guard? What a weird career he must have had.
Didn’t take Durant, or Velvet Hoop, long to separate himself from the likes of Mo Williams, a.k.a Fog Raw, Andre Iguodala, a.k.a Chief Blocka and Rashard Lewis, a.k.a. Ice-O. This campaign was a part of Nike’s Hyperize line of shoes. Not long after, Nike recognized Durant deserved his own signature line and made him one of only three NBA players (Kobe Bryant and LeBron James are the others) with a signature Nike shoe.
And just for kicks, here’s the full Don’t Criticize (Hyperize) video because, well, who can get enough of Velvet Hoop. Here’s hoping Velvet Hoop comes out of hiding and blesses us with some more bars. In the meantime, can someone please explain to me why Mo Williams had six fingers in this video?
Durant appeared here as a part of a more traditional Nike campaign called “My Better is Better” that put a spotlight on performance. The campaign kicked off in early 2008 and continued the introduction of Durant as one of the company’s star athletes.
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