SBJ/April 16 - 22, 2007/This Weeks News

A Gatorade first for Crosby

Sidney Crosby may not be close to topping Wayne Gretzky’s achievements on the ice, but he’s already outdone “The Great One” off it by becoming the first hockey player ever to be endorsed by Gatorade in the U.S.

The two reached a multiyear agreement a little over a month ago. Terms of the deal were not available.

Though Crosby already had a deal with Gatorade in Canada, this agreement is separate and allows the company to promote the second-year star and 2006-07 NHL scoring champion in the U.S. He will join the company’s extensive roster of athletes, which includes Kevin Garnett, Derek Jeter, Peyton Manning and Mia Hamm.

Crosby will be featured alongside those athletes on gatorade.com this week. The company has online creative that will begin appearing in the next week before “SportsCenter Minute” segments on ESPN.com.

As the newest Gatorade endorsee, Crosby will be a candidate for the brand’s new TV creatives. Those will be designed by Element 79, Chicago, this summer.

The deal comes as Gatorade wraps up the first year as the NHL’s exclusive isotonic beverage. The relationship with Crosby will be used to promote the brand’s first affiliation with the league since 1996, according to Tom Prochaska of Gatorade sports marketing.

“Our hope is that people will see we’re ubiquitous with hockey,” Prochaska said. “We’re back.”

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