Nike And LeBron James Say We’re Never Too Far Down To Come Back

If you’re looking for inspirational ads that aren’t corny, Nike never disappoints. Their newest spot is narrated by LeBron James and features many situations in sports where teams and individuals were down on the ropes, but came back dramatically. The “coming back from the impossible” narrative is set up as a parallel to coming back from the coronavirus pandemic. This one has caught fire online, racking up over 5 million views just since being released earlier today. And bonus points go to the fact that the closed playground shown is a mere 10 minute walk from where I live. Excellent work from Nike and Wieden+Kennedy Portland.

Nike’s “Dream Crazy” Ad, Featuring Colin Kaepernick

On Monday, Nike received praise and (stupid) outrage for unveiling a new ad campaign starring Colin Kaepernick. Now, it’s released the first ad, which will debut during tomorrow night’s NFL opener. “Dream Crazy” is an inspirational 2-minute spot, with a voiceover from Kaepernick urging people to strive hard for their goals: “Calling a dream crazy is not an insult…it’s a compliment.” The spot includes famous athletes like LeBron James and Serena Williams, along with lesser-known ones such as skater Lacey Baker and young wrestler Isaiah Bird. But Kaep is the headliner here, and he’ll get most of the attention. His last words in this ad are especially powerful…”So don’t ask if your dreams are crazy, ask if they’re crazy enough.” Wow. Good stuff, Nike.

LeBron James Is Also A Crying, Bearded Baby In This Intel Commercial

Well…that was something. I’m thinking the baby image of LeBron will become a meme, if it isn’t already.

Nike Shows Cleveland Fans Reacting To The Title

When a team wins a championship, Nike tends to make a congratulatory commercial. And when that win breaks a long curse, you’d better believe they’re making one. Last night, LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers won the NBA Finals. It was the first title for the Cavs, as well as Cleveland’s first since 1964. In Nike’s new spot, we see the reactions of Cleveland area citizens as they realize their team won it all. It was worth the wait for them.

Nike: LeBron And Cleveland Are Going All In Together

Tonight, LeBron James will make his highly anticipated return to Cleveland as a member of the Cavaliers. For the occasion, Nike has created this stirring two-minute ad showing LeBron’s importance not just to his team, but to the championship-starved city of Cleveland. Good stuff.

Nike’s Ring Commercial For LeBron

LeBron James is one of the most talented and talked-about athletes in the world. He’s long had a reputation for being great, but less effective in the clutch. His lack of a championship became an albatross. But last night, the Miami Heat defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder to win the NBA Championship.  Minutes after the game ended, this Nike commercial premiered. It was obviously made well in advance, and there probably was a Kevin Durant one too. I didn’t see it originally (I was catching up on the DVR…), but here it is.

It’s interesting to think about how popular LeBron was 2 years ago, but his reputation was really tarnished by “The Decision.” It came across as arrogant and after that, LeBron Haterade started. It’s a little complicated for me. I’m from Ohio, where many are still bitter about LeBron leaving and will never forgive him. People actively wanted him to fail, and sneered when the Heat didn’t win the title last year. But is it time to forgive him? LeBron already acknowledged that “The Decision” was a bad decision. And since then, he’s just put up great numbers and won the MVP. I’m a Miami Heat hater, and probably will never root for them, but maybe it’s time to back off LeBron. Maybe.

As for the commercial itself…very nice work. It’s artistic, following an Akron ring maker watching highlights of LeBron’s career on an old TV. He’s working on the ring, working, working…it’s a long process. But now LeBron has won, and he’ll get that ring finally.

State Farm: LeBron Wants You To Graduate

I know this commercial has been around since the beginning of the NBA season, but it’s one that I never wrote about. It’s got a great message to stay in school and it’s hard to argue with the “life is too short to sleep through it” line. Really…every 26 seconds? That’s gotta be some sort of average, since I don’t think many kids are dropping out at 4 AM. But what always cracks me up is the part with the cheesy music and LeBron just chillin in the back of the classroom with nobody noticing.

Super Bowl Retrospecticus: Michael Jordan And Larry Bird Play H-O-R-S-E For McDonald’s

The original Dream Team is likely the greatest team that will ever play in any sport. Two of the biggest stars of that team, Michael Jordan and Larry Bird, also teamed up for one of the most popular commercials in Super Bowl history. It involves Larry challenging Michael to a rather extreme game of H-O-R-S-E for his Big Mac lunch.

McDonald’s did a remake for Super Bowl XLIV, featuring LeBron James and Dwight Howard. But it just wasn’t as good. And I’m fairly certain both of them know who Larry Bird is.

What’s That Song? Part XVI

Artist: Frank Sinatra, Song: “Sleep Warm”

The NBA is still in a lockout, but basketball never sleeps for people like LeBron James. Regardless of my personal feelings for LeBron (I’m from Ohio), this is a cool ad for Nike. I approve of any commercial featuring Frank Sinatra. And this similar spot is also very nice.

Artist: Givers, Song: “Words”

A fairly pretentious commercial for Amazon’s Kindle Fire. But the song sounds great.

McDonald’s Brings The Cheese: LeBron Won Some Fries!

“Can you comment about the LeBron – McDonald’s commercial? LeBron doesn’t need to win a free fries. First of all, he’s rich and probably has a lifetime supply of free fries. So silly.”

It’s hard to talk about LeBron James in a commercial without first discussing his current image vs. what it used to be. It’s easy to forget that 18 months ago, LeBron was almost universally liked. He seemed like that rare athlete who was both immensely talented and humble. And then….well, we know what happened. It’s been talked about to death, so I’ll try to be brief. Most people weren’t angry that LeBron left, but it was how he did it that pissed people off. He was a free agent and had every right to move on. People leave Ohio all the time…hell, I’m from Ohio and I’m trying to leave. But when he made a huge hoopla and said the words “I’m going to take my talents to South Beach” on his own ridiculous announcement show, it made him seem like every other arrogant athlete that we thought (or hoped) he was different from. Ever since then, media and fans have seemed more than happy to watch LeBron fail.

Which brings us to this commercial. McDonald’s Monopoly is back. I remember playing in 5th grade and being all excited because I got Park Place. Little did I know that Park Place was one of the most common properties, there to entice people for the futile Boardwalk search. Yeah, LeBron is rich and probably can get all the fries he wants. I hope he’d give those fries to a homeless guy or something. At least he has a sense of humor about McDonald’s taking a jab at his infamous “7 titles” claim. Of course, when I saw the odds of winning a prize in McDonald’s Monopoly were 1 in 4, I thought “1 in 4? That’s 25%. Which is  better than LeBron’s 4th quarter shooting percentage!”

Bonus video: I’m pretty sure LeBron James and Dwight Howard know who Larry Bird is.

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