Gatorade spokesperson and all-around nice dude Kevin Durant will cease his partnership with the sports drink popularized by His Airness, Michael Jordan, reports ESPN Sports Business Insider Darren Rovell.
As Rovell notes on Twitter, Durant’s contract with Gatorade ends next week, and it will not be renewed. Gatorade is not commenting on future dicussions about their dealings with the 3-time NBA scoring champ.
Kevin Durant's deal with Gatorade will expire next week and will not be renewed. Gatorade not commenting on future discussions.
— darren rovell (@darrenrovell) September 27, 2013
Durant starred in a series of commercials for Gatorade with the Miami Heat’s Dwayne Wade where both are shown having nightmares of each one-upping the other on the court.
Earlier this week, the two feuded on social media, with Wade taking a comment by Durant — where he disagreed with Wade’s inclusion as a top 10 player on Sports Illustrated‘s player rankings — as a slight. Durant believes his former teammate on the Thunder, James Harden, should have been included in the top 10 ahead of Wade — who was ranked No. 8 by SI.
Wade posted the Durant quote as a handwritten dry erase board message on Instagram, and Durant answered on Twitter. During the Thunder’s media day today, Durant spoke about the back-and-forth for all the world to see and said it was just about competition.
“Dwyane Wade is a great, great player, man, and I’d never discredit anything he’s ever done or nothing like that,” Durant said as he wrapped up a 12-minute interview session with reporters. “I just voiced my opinion. He’s a great, great player, the Finals MVP, a champion. I didn’t disrespect that or take that away from him or anything. I just voiced my opinion as of today. I love you D-Wade, man, it’s just competition.”
Some might point to the minor beef as tangentially related to Durant’s contract with Gatorade, since they both starred in the nightmare Gatorade commercial together. We don’t think a behemoth brand like Gatorade would actively disassociate itself from a player of Durant’s caliber simply because he was involved in an online spat with another athlete they represent. If anything, the timing is weird, since interest in their appearance together in the commercial escalated once the beef started.
Regardless, we can’t wait until the Thunder and Heat first meet next season on January 29 at American Airlines Arena in Miami. The season needs to just get here already.
What do you think?
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