There Can Only Be One NBA Campaign

The National Basketball Association (NBA) in the United States promoted the 2008 Playoffs and Finals with “There Can Only Be One”, an integrated advertising campaign involving interactive, print and film components. The campaign, featuring two players at a time, promoted basketball games on NBA, TNT, ESPN and ABC, connecting with fans online at www.nba.com/therecanonlybeone.

NBA Kobe and Shaq in There Can Only Be One advertisement


NBA Dirk and Duncan in There Can Only Be One advertisement

NBA LeBron and Garnett in There Can Only Be One advertisement

Kobe Bryant and Shaq, Dirk Nowitzki and Tim Duncan, LeBron James and Kevin Garnett appear in the MBA campaign.

Make Your Own

The online site invited fans to submit their own versions of the There Can Be Only One print ads, resulting in some very effective digital retouching.

Make your own There Can Be Only One

The Commercials

There Can Be Only One television advertising campaign focused on the intense competition that comes from the sixteen best basketball teams in the world battling for one championship. The production team travelled across the country filming and photographing the top players from each of the teams that would advance to the playoffs. The debut spots featured Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal speaking on “fear,” while LeBron James and Kevin Garnett discuss “the dream.” Each subsequent spot was specific to one of the match-ups, and featured one of three players from each team, face-to-face.

Fear

Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal talk about fear. Music is “New World” by Devotchka.

Click on the image below to play the video in YouTube (HD)

Dream

There can be only one: LeBron James and Kevin Garnett have long dreamed of winning a championship. Music is “Water From The Source” by Rachel.

Click on the image below to play the video in YouTube (HD)

Respect

Kevin Garnett and LeBron James talk about earning respect in the playoffs. Music is “New Heights” by Great Northern.

Click on the image below to play the video in YouTube (HD)

Remembered

For Antawn Jamison and Ben Wallace, the only thing that matters now is the playoffs. Music is “Wooden Heart” by Duke Spirit.

Click on the image below to play the video in YouTube (HD)

Work

Nash and Kidd talk about digging deeper. Music is “House of Cards” by Radiohead.

Click on the image below to play the video in YouTube (HD)

Credits

There Can Be Only One was developed at Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, San Francisco, by executive creative director/copywriter Jamie Barrett, associate creative director/art director Stefan Copiz, associate creative director/copywriter Ari Weiss, art director Jack Woodworth, copywriter Craig Mangan, agency executive producer Tod Puckett, print producers Suzee Barrabee and Hillary Talltree.

Filming was shot by directors Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris via Bob Industries, Los Angeles, with director of photography Christope Lanzenberg, executive producers TK Knowles, John O’Grady, Chuck Ryant, and producer Bart Lipton.

Editor was Geoff Hounsell at Lost Planet. VFX were produced at Brickyard VFX, supervised by Lead artist Geoff McAuliffe. Sound was mixed at Lime Studios by Rohan Young, Loren Silber and Lindsay Alvarez.

Graphics were designed at Eyeball NYC.

Print advertisements were by photographer Jennifer Pottheiser.

Awards

The campaign won the Magazine Publishers of America Grand Prize Kelly award.

Time Magazine Tribute

The May 5, 2008 edition of Time Magazine featured photographs of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in a rendition inspired by the NBA There Can Only Be One campaign.

Time magazine cover featuring Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton

  • Nathan

    Nice post. Great timing in those ads… wonder how they got it so perfect? Also, just a note to let you know the title says MBA but I think it should say NBA?