Boston Celtics point guard and NBA champion Kyrie Irving is set to appear in a commercial promoting vegan meat brand Beyond Meat.
According to the Los Angeles Times, in the coming days, Beyond Meat is expected to announce a partnership with Irving that includes a commercial.
The six-time NBA All Star ditched meat and commenced his vegan diet during the 2017 offseason.
After returning to the game, he mentioned to reporters that he had started eating a vegan diet, and Beyond Meat responded by offering to send him samples.
“I was noticing that I wasn’t able to recover as fast after games and workouts,” he said. “I did a lot of research and learned that my diet could be a factor.
“It was good timing as I was struggling to find quality plant-based foods that still had a lot of flavor.”
Irving has since become a big fan of the vegan burger brand. He is even often seen sporting the Beyond Meat hat, which features a cow wearing a cape.
Irving’s career highlight is arguably knocking down a contested 3-point shot with only 53 seconds left in a winner-take-all game 7 of the 2016 NBA Finals, which led to the win and the city of Cleveland ending a 52-year professional sports championship drought.
Beyond Meat is also expected to partner with other NBA athletes who eat the brand’s plant-based meat.
A few NBA players who have had great things to say about Beyond Meat are 3-point marksman JJ Redick, Knicks center DeAndre Jordan, and Lakers center and 2-time NBA champ JaVale McGee, who has credited his improvements to the Beyond Burger.
Beyond Meat will now bank on the NBA athletes who are able to influence fans to buy sneakers and apparel to do the same with vegan meat.
“They have the power to change the world,” said Ethan Brown, Beyond Meat CEO.
“I don’t know if they really feel that way yet, but it’s true. They have the opportunity to influence an entire generation of kids to eat healthier and help save the environment.”
Beyond Meat is known for having a similar texture and taste to meat, with meat eaters often remarking on how much the products taste like meat, despite the fact that they are made from strictly plant-based ingredients.
The meat also “bleeds” when it cooks, giving the appearance of a beef burger cooking by oozing out red liquid that is actually beet juice.
Beyond Meat, which now has a valuation of $500 million, is backed by Microsoft founder Bill Gates and recently reached 25 million of its flagship Beyond Meat Burgers sold worldwide.