Since the early 1990s, ESPN has provided a variety of commercials that poke fun at its own flagship program. Featuring famous current athletes, show personalities, and team mascots, ‘This is SportsCenter’ has long been the lone consistent sweet spot for a network that has become infamous for taking itself too seriously.
Every ‘TIS’ scenario involves the show’s most charismatic personalities colliding in everyday #PGP interactions with in-uniform famous athletes and/or silent mascots — all of which have undefined behind-the-scenes menial office roles. While all of them provide some clever, witty references that every sports fan with a decent sense of humor should appreciate, only a much smaller percentage of them provide actual laugh-out-loud reactions. This highly scientific power ranking highlights the elite, memorable ones that result in the latter.
5. ‘Captain America’ (2006)
Nothing beats SVP and the underrated Neil Everett nerding out like little kids. This is hands down the goofiest one yet.
4. ‘Big Buddies’ (1999)
We’ve all been guilty of trying to impress the established athletes in the midst of an extremely innocent pickup game. Kenny Mayne and Stuart Scott get a little carried away with their competitiveness in trying to woo late ’90s greats Sam Cassell and Jayson Williams.
3. ‘Chad Johnson Touchdown Celebrations’ (2006)
An applicable “Boo-ya!” from the late great Stuart Scott, plus an unforgettable “sizzling bacon action” for the mid-aughts’ most celebrated wide receiver, Chad Johnson.
2. ‘Old Timers’ Day’ (2000)
ESPN is probably too PC to make light of geezers’ lack of current sports knowledge these days. Let’s be thankful they weren’t in 2000 before Bernie gets this removed from YouTube lore.
1. ‘Rookie Training Camp’ (1996)
Kenny and Stu back at it again with the in-your-face aggressiveness. Co-starring Kobe Bryant and Keyshawn Johnson, kudos to ESPN for accurately projecting the most high profile figures from the NBA and NFL’s respective 1996 drafts.
Like the most recent one, all ‘This is SportsCenter’ commercials are quality television that helps remind us that sports news doesn’t always have to be as serious as the actual show makes it out to be. However, while most are only worth a slight smirk, these actually produce audible laughs and high re-watchability value..
Image via YouTube