Jayson Tatum to star in two new SportsCenter commercials


The first of these commercials, “Meeting Lineup,” will air during Wednesday’s Celtics game against the New York Knicks.

Jayson Tatum starred in two commercials advertising their show SportsCenter. Jessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff

The Boston Celtics will tip off their season on Wednesday, beginning an 82-game journey that superstar forward Jayson Tatum is expected to lead. 

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Because of Tatum’s prominence and his status as one of the NBA’s best players, ESPN has decided to make him a part of their ad campaign This is SportsCenter.

“As the NBA season tips off, Jayson Tatum is the latest NBA great to star in the beloved This is SportsCenter campaign,” said Seth Ader, ESPN’s vice president of brand marketing.

This is SportsCenter aired its first ad in 1994 to promote the company’s show SportsCenter by depicting athletes and arena elements in standard office situations alongside various ESPN employees. The ad campaign is no stranger to welcoming Boston’s biggest stars to their sets, and the next great Celtic stars in two commercials, titled “Meeting Lineup” and “Security Badge.”

“Meeting Lineup” begins with SportsCenter anchors Nicole Briscoe and Steve Levy walking into a conference room for a meeting. As they walk in, a PA announcer shouts their names and alma maters, similarly to how the home team of a basketball game introduces their starting lineups.

After Levy sits down, the PA announcer introduces Jayson Tatum, who then enters the room dressed in his Celtic uniform and meekly says hello to his “coworkers.”

In “Security Badge,” Tatum enters a room to have his photo for his security badge taken, but not before being bumped by Ramses, the mascot of the University of North Carolina and his Duke Blue Devils’ archrival. The photographer asks for Tatum’s name, but he can’t find it on his list of employees. Tatum offers several nicknames of his that could be on that list instead, but the photographer finds it after Tatum clarifies that his first name contains the letter “y.”

“Here at SportsCenter, it doesn’t get much bigger than security badge photo day,” anchor Scott van Pelt said in the commercial before Tatum appears.

Tatum is one of sports’ highest-profile names, so it’s not much of a surprise that ESPN would include him in these new ads. Several of the world’s best athletes have preceded Tatum in these commercials, and others, including Vegas Golden Knights star forward and Massachusetts native Jack Eichel, join him in this series of brand new ads.

“Meeting Lineup” will debut on Wednesday during the Celtics’ season-opener against the New York Knicks, and “Security Badge” will air on Friday, when the Celtics travel back to Boston to take on the Miami Heat.

Originally posted 2023-10-25 16:49:20.