From overlooked high-school recruit to unknown mid-major college star to one of the best professional basketball players in the world, Damian Lillard’s improbable rise has been driven by sheer grit and determination. In his first advertising campaign as POWERADE®’s new brand ambassador, Lillard shows the kind of hard work it took to ascend from consummate underdog to one of the greatest players in the game.
In "No Easy Bucket," a 30-second spot, Lillard pushes his body to the limit in a series of punishing workouts, including a sparring session in the basketball gym with world-renowned boxing trainer Virgil Hunter. With sweat pouring and his breathing heavy, Lillard reaches for POWERADE as fuel to power through the workout.
"My story doesn’t involve an easy road, but a constant, uphill battle to prove doubters wrong, and I know my fellow underdogs can relate," Lillard said. "With POWERADE and this campaign, I want to inspire young athletes to power through whatever obstacles stand in the way of their dreams, just like I have."
The new spot will begin airing during NCAA® Division I men’s basketball tournament and will be supported by two digital ads, "Heart" and "Work."
"Damian Lillard is one of the top basketball players in the world today, but it’s easy to forget how he came up under the radar and took the game by storm," said Shannon Watkins, senior director, POWERADE. "Some athletes are preordained, but Damian’s story is a testament to the good that can come from an absolutely relentless work ethic. POWERADE is excited to tell his story to inspire others and be a part of his journey. We believe he’s just getting started."
The new ad campaign was developed in partnership with advertising agency Wieden+Kennedy in Portland, Ore. For more information, please visit POWERADE.com and follow POWERADE (@powerade) on Instagram and Twitter.
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