Spalding Shoots to Score

NEW YORK Spalding will launch a print-anchored campaign to support its 2005 lineup of new products, which include Infusion3 and Zi/O Excel basketballs.

The effort, via independent Winstanley Associates in Lenox, Mass., includes three ads starring Paul Pierce of the Boston Celtics to run throughout the year in national sports magazines. Support includes a streaming video “We’re Giving You the Shirts Off Our Back” for the 15 SKU Jersey ball line, which will run on and also be seen by fans in NBA arenas in Boston, San Antonio, Indianapolis and Washington, D.C.

The Springfield, Mass.-based client spends $2-3 million annually on ads.

“Forward Thinking” sees Pierce in a statuesque pose as the Thinker sitting on a pile of old, used and outdated pumps. Text reads, “The new Infusion3. A faster Micro Pump inflates at twice the original speed.” “It’s Time to Play Favorites” shows Pierce donning his Celtics jersey while holding his own No. 34 Jersey basketball. Copy reads, “Your favorite NBA players’ uniform is now a basketball. Hit the court in home or away style with authentic jersey designs only from Spalding.”

In “Truth on Handling,” Pierce holds the Zi/O Excel basketball behind his back, which is emblazoned with his tattoo “The Chosen One.” Text: “The new Zi/O Excel basketball. It’s the same Zi/O that has been played competitively on courts across the country, only better. The addition of superior foam backing under full ball pebbling makes handling now even more precise. That’s the truth.”

—Brandweek staff report