Wednesday
May042011

Derrick Rose MVP Honor Bulls adidas, PowerAde, NBA Into Marketing Mode

By Barry Janoff, Executive Editor

Adidas was among Rose's marketing partners to honor his MVP award.May 4, 2011: It didn't take long for the marketing wheels to turn after 22-year-old Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls was named the NBA's MVP for 2010-11, which is presented by Kia.

The youngest MVP in NBA history had barely concluded his acceptance speech, offering much love to his mom, Brenda, when Rose's marketing partners were on the air and across the Internet with congratulatory ads, highlight reels and. of course, merchandise.

Among them: adidas, Coca-Cola's PowerAde, the Bulls and the NBA.

Analysts who already had pegged Rose as an up-and-coming marketing star say the MVP award will win over companies who may have been on the fence about his ability to sell products. His age and demeanor makes him a strong spokesman for target demos in such categories as mobile phones, cars, electronics and grooming.

Rose is represented by former NBA player and Chicago Bulls guard B.J. Armstrong, who is vp-basketball management at Wasserman Media Group in Los Angeles.

Adidas has combined Rose's words from the beginning of the 2010-11 season when people were questioning whether or not it was too soon for him to be MVP. The support comes from a highlight reel showing Rose in action, outfitted in adidas shoes and, of course, adidas jersey.

"The way I look at it within myself, why not? Why can't I be the MVP of the league?," Rose asks. "Why can't I be the best player in the league? I don't see why-why-why can't I do that?"

Highlights from this past season roll on, including Rose wearing his signature adiZero shoe during the 2011 NBA All-Star Game.

Rose continues, "I think I work hard, I think I dedicate myself to the game and sacrifice a lot of things at a young age and I know if I continue to do good, what I can get out of it and if that's me going out or doing whatever, I'm willing to do it because I know in the long run, it's going to help me."

The spot concludes with an homage to Rose and adidas' current tag line: "Youngest MVP in league history. D Rose is all in."

PowerAde pays hommage to Rose and his MVP season.PowerAde foregoes spoken words for highlights of Rose and the Bulls, shows him drinking PowerAde Ion4 and also makes note of his status at 22 as the NBA's youngest-ever MVP.

PowerAde's roster also includes Ryan Howard, Chris Paul and Chris Johnson.

Wes Unseld was 23 when he won the honor in 1968-69. Among others, Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Moses Malone each were 24 at the time they won their respective MVP awards.

Rose also is just the second player in Bulls history to win the MVP, although the other, Michael Jordan, won it five times.

The rest of the top five in MVP voting for the 2010-11 season was Dwight Howard, LeBron James (who had won the previous two MVP awards), Kobe Bryant and Kevin Durant.

"Why can't I be the MVP of the league? Why can't I be the best player in the league? I don't see why-why-why can't I do that?"

The Bulls honored Rose with a home page takeover with links to his speech and other highlights. The Bulls online store features a bevy of items attributing Rose's MVP status. That includesT -shirts, pennants, autographed photos, flags, towels and even a clock that keeps time over a photo of Rose and the words: 2010-11 NBA Most Valuable Player and a faux Rose signature.

The NBA was quick to hit its online NBA Store destination with MVP T-shirts, in addition to its array of other Rose goods.

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