THE UNPARALLELED CHARISMA OF RAJON RONDO

On the court, Rajon Rondo is probably one of the more interesting players in today’s NBA.  His combination of ball-handling skills, razor-sharp passing, freakish hands that he uses to do numerous things, and his constant struggles with wide-open jumpers make for good theater.

Off the court, you usually don’t hear a whole lot about him.  Although he’s a top guard on a top team, he’s not necessarily adored or featured a lot by the NBA in their myriad of advertisements.  He’s far from the bottom of the barrel, but you’re far more likely to see Derrick Rose, Dwight Howard, Kevin Durant, etc.

Rondo, however, did take part in this commercial:

Where to begin?  Well, for starters, the overall tackiness of the whole thing is readily-apparent from the moment that the words “Rajon Rondo, Professional Basketball Player” show up in three different equally-terrible looking fonts (along with some “flashing stars” for dramatic effect).  Then Rajon kicks in with a little poetry of sorts:

“Down the court.
Behind the back.
Fake left. go right.
I could do this ALL NIGHT.”

It rhymes, technically.  For the hearing-impaired reader, I’ll go ahead and let you know that Rajon sounds like he’d rather be ANYWHERE else.  It’s the type of delivery you’d expect when you call up to order a pizza and get the jaded employee on the other end.  That whole “I’m 4 hours into my 12-hour shift and if you shot me in the face right now, that would be okay” vibe.

The ad keeps on giving.  Here are some of the highlights:

(0:26) Voice-over guy:  DEDICATED ATHLETE, Rajon Rondo, wears iRenew Sport.

– Rondo: “Pumpin’ iron… build strength and speed… (indecipherable words because he’s talking so quietly)”

A few things.  First off, who taught this “dedicated athlete” how to lift weights?  He leaves his thumbs all flared out when bench pressing and does his lat pulldowns behind the neck, rather than in front.  Both are fine examples of incorrect form that are likely to lead to injury.  Furthermore, watch him run on the treadmill.  It’s the type of intensity that you might see from somebody in their dress slacks/shoes, or the kind of running someone would do if they were forced to run in a public setting.  Seriously, he looks like he’s late for an appointment and needs to get there quicker, but he doesn’t want to look all weird running in front of everyone, and he doesn’t want to get all sweaty, either.

(0:44) Voice-over guy:  ALL-STAR, Rajon Rondo, wears iRenew Sport.

At this point, it shows Rondo signing autographs… for a trio of 9-year old girls in a darkened gymnasium.

– Rondo:  “Triple-double.  Point guard.  Dribble drive.  Lead the break.  No look pass.  Off the glass.”

What?  It’s like they just jammed a bunch of basketball terms all together, which sort of relate to each other, and then ended it with “pass” and “glass,” hoping that the rhyme would distract us from the disjointed nature of the rest of the sequence.

(0:55) Voice-over guy:  ICON, Rajon Rondo, wears iRenew Sport.

When did Rajon Rondo graduate to “icon” status?  Who ever goes, “Wilt.  Dr. J.  Michael.  Magic.  Bird.  Rajon…”?  Outside of possibly some Boston idiots, nobody.

(1:08) Voice-over guy:  You’ve heard sports talk shows rave about the bracelet…

Nope.

This is all followed by the ad promising to send you a free, additional bracelet… because you’ll probably lose or break the first and these things cost, like, 12 cents to make.  Additionally, it is noted that you are simply to wear the bracelet while you are playing your game, and “… your game will never be the same.”  If it has even 1/10th of the impact that the Reebok Pumps had on my game, well, consider me satisfied.

You can find this commercial on NBA TV, sandwiched between the Shakeweight, the ridiculously over-enthusiastic old guy yelling at you about how great the “Hoverround” is, and the commercial touting the merits of metal-detection and describing how some guy found a fortune in some dirt somewhere (and how you’re far more likely to find someone’s old fingernail clippers or, at best, the rearview mirror from a mid-90s Nissan Sentra).

– Semi-regular blog guy, Wes Lilliman, wears iRenew Sport.

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2 thoughts on “THE UNPARALLELED CHARISMA OF RAJON RONDO

  1. Awful commercial, no doubt, but the deadpan effect is Rondo's style, and it's quite charismatic in its own way. I think you are the one who doesn't get it. Rondo is one of the NBA's most popular and best players. Terrible commercial for a terrible product, though. Super tacky.

  2. Eh, Rondo's never shown anything that suggests that his style is that of a "deadpan effect." I just don't think he cares, in this case, and has a monotonous way of speaking (with the exception of his on-court yelling). Fair enough if you find it charismatic. His strong-suit, appeal wise, is his play.That said, it's mostly on the commercial. You've got Rondo, and that's the best you can come up with? Maybe they blew the budget signing Rajon? Who wrote this stuff?Anyhow, it fits in perfectly on NBA TV.

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