Following its first-ever Super Bowl appearance, the Canadian crypto-marketplace Bitbuy is charging into yet another high-profile sports event to showcase its partnership with former Toronto Raptors star Kyle Lowry.
On Sunday, Bitbuy will air the second of three spots it filmed with Lowry on Dec. 22, in the much-anticipated game between the Raptors and Miami Heat on Rogers Sportsnet. It will be Lowry’s first game in Toronto since being traded to the Heat last year, and is expected to attract significant ratings.
Kawhi Leonard’s first game back in Toronto after leading the team to its first NBA championship before departing for the Los Angeles Clippers drew a record 3.2 million viewers in December 2019. It’s entirely possible that the ratings for the return of Lowry—a beloved star who’s been dubbed the “GROAT” (Greatest Raptor of All Time) by fans—could exceed that.
The new spot, “No Hidden Charges,” humorously plays off Lowry’s almost unmatched ability, even at the age of 36, to “take a charge” on the court. The NBA defines a charge as when an offensive player makes “significant contact” with a defender that has an established position. In layman’s terms, it means that Lowry is routinely crashed into by (often much larger) opponents.
The 30-second spot once again brings the NBA star together with Jared Crowe, the screechy voiced actor who plays Bitbuy’s creative leader. He greets Lowry with a hug, and informs him that the next spot in the series is promoting the fact that Bitbuy has no hidden charges. “If anybody knows how painful a charge can be, it’s definitely me,” says Lowry.
Then, with no warning, the NBA star is then immediately thrust into filming. We hear heavy footsteps in the background and a water glass on a table begins to tremble. “Take a charge, Kyle” says Crowe, who’s cowering behind a desk and holding a megaphone.
The camera then reveals the 600-pound sumo wrestler Yama—the heaviest Japanese sumo wrestler ever—who has the word “fees” written on his chest and squeezes the air out of a basketball before charging at a visibly nervous Lowry. “That was amazing,” says Crowe as the Bitbuy name appears on screen. “Set it up for take two.”
“The goal of the Super Bowl commercial was to build awareness for Bitbuy and crypto investing in general,” said Bitbuy’s marketing and communications director, Binu Koshy. “The goal of part two is to communicate why they should choose Bitbuy over the competition.”