NBA: Kevin Love And DeMar DeRozan Discuss Mental Health

The Cleveland Cavaliers and the Toronto Raptors are currently playing each other in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. Kevin Love of the Cavs and DeMar DeRozan of the Raptors have both experienced well-documented struggles with mental health. In this spot, Love and DeRozan talk about how it’s good to ask for help. A very important and effective ad from the NBA.

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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.

Tuesday Throwback: Nike Honors Ben Wilson

Last night I watched Benji, a documentary about the short life and shocking murder of Chicago high school basketball phenom Ben Wilson. In researching after I watched, I discovered this Nike ad featuring Wilson’s story that aired during the 1997 NBA playoffs. Excellent work.

Powerade: Featuring Derrick Rose And Tupac Shakur

Last week, Chicago Bulls star point guard Derrick Rose underwent surgery to repair a torn meniscus. It’s the latest in a long line of knee injuries for Rose. The Bulls say he should be able to return for the playoffs, but at this point it’s easy to wonder if Rose might be the new Penny Hardaway; a great player who is ultimately betrayed by his body. Under that lens, this new Powerade spot featuring a voiceover by Tupac Shakur seems especially poignant. It shows a young boy who represents a young Derrick Rose riding his bike through Chicago’s rough South Side to the United Center, paralleling Rose’s own life. The video is beautifully shot, and Tupac’s powerful words from “The Rose That Grew From Concrete” adds to the scene. Great work.

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.

Dikembe Mutombo Swats For Geico

I’m not a fan of the doofy Geico musical duo. I find them to be smarmy and annoying. But any commercial that features retired NBA great Dikembe Mutombo swatting away things and doing his trademark finger wag is a winner in my book.

An NBA Sunday: Kevin Durant/Sprint And Kobe Bryant/Nike

Today, the Oklahoma City Thunder head to LA to face the struggling Lakers. So this seems like a good time to mention a few commercials featuring the biggest stars from each team: Kevin Durant and Kobe Bryant.

This Sprint commercial with Kevin Durant is fun and silly. Nothing groundbreaking, but the visual of Durant in ill-fitting pajamas sure is amusing. Speaking of, the word “pajamas” is inherently amusing. And it turns out the wife is appreciating the fact that her husband is suddenly more height blessed.

And now Kobe Bryant for Nike. Being a Nike commercial, it’s pretty awesome, if a touch pretentious. Excellent copy that suggests counting on Kobe is like any other inevitable thing in the world. Very cool visuals, ending with #COUNTONKOBE. It’s the introductory spot to the Kobe8System, his newest sneakers.

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