espn2 australian open tv commercial: “tennis down under”

ESPN2 TV commercial - 2013 Australian Open

As if we weren’t already loopy from all the overnight shifts to cover the Australian Open, this commercial promoting ESPN2′s coverage of the the 2013 Melbourne event is sending us over the edge. The graphics play on how everything’s upside down (under) in the Southern Hemisphere. We love it.

Watch: 2013 Australian Open “Tennis Down Under”


(screengrab via YouTube)

before london, andy tried a new game

Small court, big results. Before Andy Murray‘s London hopes got muddled because of injury, the Scot took to a British warehouse to play some Road Tennis. Not sure what that is? Nor were we. adidas explains:

[We invited the] Road Tennis Association of Barbados to London, to teach Murray how to play Road Tennis. A cross between traditional tennis and table tennis, Road Tennis is played on the street, with participants chalking out their own courts. Murray had never played the game before, and was given just one hour to pick up his wooden bat and attempt to master the game’s ins and outs, before we put him up against Barbados’ finest.

In the video above, Murray gets a “warm-up” with storied English boxer David Haye, who is now retired, and British rapper Example.

adidas noted that the Murray vid was the first of many to come for the brand over the next year: “The event marked the start of our new campaign, where we’ll be challenging some of the world’s best tennis players, around the biggest tournaments next year.” Excited? You bet we are!

As for who Murray gets a lesson from on the Road Tennis pavement? That’d be Sylvain “Lama” Barnett, a legend in Barbados and one of the Pro Road Tennis Association’s greatest players of all time.

k-swiss’ kenny powers takes on jt

KP or JT? If you paid any attention to the ESPYs last week, Justin Timberlake (what isn’t he doing these days?!) did a comedic short for the show titled “I Love Sports,” put on by Capital One. But K-Swiss has a good series featuring a character named Kenny Powers that takes on the similar tone of Timbo’s vid, which Ad Age recommends checking out. While Justin’s spot logged in 2.7 million views, one of Kenny’s new spot had 1.6 million hits. Also on their vid chart for the week? Those classy Old Spice spots. We can’t quit em.

short balls: giving a damn

Giving a damn: We made note of Ellen’s powerful words last week after the disturbing rash of suicides among LGBT youth. The nation has banded together in a variety of ways, including the We Give a Damn project that was launched by the True Colors Fund. This past Sunday night, activists held a candlelight vigil in Washington Square Park in New York City.  Actor and blogger, Andrew Kennan Bolger, documented the evening on video.  More to watch: We Give a Damn has a few of their own videos, featuring some of our favorite big and small screen faces – among others. Check them out. Plus: Zachary Quinto says (Tweets?) the right thing after 50 Cent runs his mouth again.

Commercial offerings: There’s plenty to see on YouTube if you go and type in ‘tennis’ in the search bar and sift through the many (dozens? hundreds?!) of homes for sale that happen to include tennis in their property in one way or another. One good find we had this week was an old Heineken commercial that hadn’t crossed our path before. Watch the video – camera tipping and all – here. Meanwhile, we found the newly-released Australian Open commercial (below), tagged “A Whole New Level” via the ladies over at OntheBaseline. None other than Ms. Sam Stosur makes five appearances in the 31-second clip. Joining Serena, Roger and Rafa as the faces to be seen at the AO 2011.

The injury diaries: The injured Justine Henin is set to test the competitive waters in an exhibition against Kim Clijsters in Antwerp on December 9th. Things aren’t as peachy for Robby Ginepri, who broke his arm in a biking accident and will be out of the game for the rest of the season. We’re hoping for a Sam Querrey kind of return for the current world no. 118… not a James Blake kind of return.

Tennis shavings: Things are feeling a bit more Blake than Querrey over at NYC-based Tennis magazine. The publication announced earlier this week that they would cut four of nine editorial positions and begin outsourcing most of its art and photo work, focusing more in-house on Tennis.com. The magazine recently shuffled Sarah Unke from her role on the print side to be online editor following the departure of Abigail Lorge. It’s unclear who is still calling Tennis his or her work home, though assistant online editor Ed McGrogan posted an ESPN blog item earlier today. 10tenmedia, a New York creative firm, will handle much of the mag’s print design.

Body games: Former Tennis cover girl Anna Kournikova made an appearance on the small screen on NBC’s “Biggest Loser” last night. Kournikova served up some motivation for the contestants, and they seemed to inspire her, too. ESPN the Magazine hits newsstands this week with their annual “The Body Issue.” The mag always chooses several different covers to print (six this year), and wheelchair tennis queen Esther Vergeer got the nod for one of those covers in this cover print. The US women’s water polo team also has a cover, as does golfer Camilo Villegas (yeah, we’ve never heard of him either).

More of short balls, including a giggling Roger and an all-inclusive short(er) balls, after the cut.

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reebok goes for the backside approach; more oreo (moreo?)

Reebok‘s EasyTone shoe is coming with an easy-on-the-eyes ad campaign that the company has rolled out over the last year. The ads feature backsides of women (and their calves and their thighs and their… ) in a variety of outfits, settings and backdrops. Reebok has a couple of ads circulating on TV and the web for the shoe, which has “balance-ball inspired technology” on the soles to “tone and shape.”

Buy it: From $49.99-$139.98, the EasyTone selection includes athletic wear, sandals, and boots for both men and women. Our fave? The EasyTone Reeinspire in lime green. Just in time for the Aussie Open to get under way…

More commercials: Another spot from Oreo to introduce their new “Heads or Tails” cookie with the help from Venus and company. (See a previous one here.)

(screengrabs via youtube)

feeling stuffy?

It’s a little beyond me why athletes like Eli Manning, Apolo Ohno, Shaq and Venus are part of endorsements deals like the ad campaign for Nabisco’s Oreo cookies. Laundry detergent? OK. Watches? Sure. Deodorant? Fine.

But for these athletes who pride themselves on being healthy, active individuals, why a cookie that’s made up of pure sugar? And to boot, this commercial is dismal. I don’t quite understand the Team DSRL angle, but it looks like they’re encouraging the youngsters to be somewhat active? If so, kudos.

Oh, and Oreo: ‘stuff’ is spelled with two Fs, FYI. Just putting it out there.

(screen grab via youtube)

big changes for the little ones

The USTA put out a press release today, along with this ad (click image above to see video) detailing the changes in the youth game, particularly with kids 10 and under. Along with its new teaching system, QuickStart, the USTA is pushing a more accessible and ready-to-use kit for tennis teaches and enthusiasts to get youngsters out on the court called 10 & Under Tennis.

This ad focuses on the fact that tennis – separate from most other sports – has its young players play the game from the get-go on big-time courts, just like the ones the pros play on. Now, coupled with QuickStart, the USTA will implement that 10-and-under sanctioned tournaments (beginning in 2012) will be on smaller courts, and different teaching techniques, systems and equipment will be available to get kids on the court.

Along with the change in court size, balls will be lighter and not as bouncy (so as to develop hand-eye coordination) and racquets will be lighter and shorter (a better fit to the youngsters’ body sizes).

And if you aren’t interested in this issue whatsoever, just watch the ad… we love the cinematography. Kudos!

For artistic sake, a couple more screen grabs of the commercial after the jump, along with the full text of the press release from the USTA. [Read more...]

serena, queen of aces

Gatorade has put out the first post-Wimbledon win ad featuring Serena Williams, and we’re liking it okay. We wish she would’ve kept a little bit more of a retro look in costuming, but the girl can smile, twirl, swing (and serve!) and we gotta give her props for smashing 89 aces in seven matches, a tournament record on her way to the title. Click the image above to watch the commercial!

(screen grab via youtube)

live blogging the FO (men’s) final

5:39 PM 6-4, 6-2, 6-4 Game, set, match, Nadal I’m pretty happy for Rafa and that win. He definitely deserved it. Congrats, big guy.

5:24 PM 6-4, 6-2, 5-3 Nadal Time for the Robin Soderling to pull out the gladiator armor. He’s neeeeeeeeding it.

5:07 PM 6-4, 6-2, 3-1 Nadal No, we have no idea who the junior champions are, either. And so much for Bode Miller‘s U.S. Open bid. Kind of rough for the USTA‘s number one story line to flame out in the first round. McEnroe is really doing his best to verbally route for Sod to take this to four or five.

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