New York sports fans have been getting repeatedly worked into a frenzy these past weeks.
First we had a bad case of “Linsanity,” which cooled some when the Knicks went on one of their losing streaks. But the team, with a new coach, Mike Woodson, seems back on track, winning four games in a row. Lin injected some excitement into New York basketball and became a household name that companies have sought to be associated with.
Coca-Cola is adding courtside ads in Chinese to reach international fans. And Lin is part of the reason ad prices and sales for televised Knicks games have spiked. His jersey has been the top seller for all NBA players since February 4.
Lin also has a deal with Volvo and, dating back to before he was famous, a deal with Nike.
Now enter Tim Tebow.
The news was only announced today (one day after Peyton Manning held a press conference to announce his move from the Indianapolis Colts to the Denver Broncos), but already the Internet is on fire with “Tebowmania,” #TebowGotTradedFor (“a box of buttered popcorn and two tickets to the Bobcats,” according to Mike Epps), and talk of the dynamic between quarterback Mark Sanchez and the new hire.
“Sanchez has to be consistent, accurate, move the offense and score points,” says ESPN. “Sanchez can do the throwing, Tebow can do the running and New York’s 25th-ranked offense will be scoring at a higher clip than last season. That’s a win-win for the Jets.” And for fans, endorsing companies, and everyone else who would partner up with these two.
But before we get to the trophies and messy parades, New Yorkers have to be New Yorkers. Which means they have to trash talk.
“As religious as Tim Tebow is, he’ll quickly learn that no matter what he does, there’s still only one god in NYC: Derek Sanderson Jeter,” the New York Observer quotes one tweeter.
So ultimately, who will reign supreme? USA Today asks the question, noting, “Given that Tebow and Lin have sparkling images, share the same Christian ideals, and have a Heisman Trophy and a Harvard education between them, the two no doubt loom as a marketer’s dream.”
[images: Top, left to right — Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow, Photo: AP. Bottom: Jeremy Lin, Photo:Adam Hunger, Reuters]