Liquid Death and Jalen Green Play Hoops With a Severed Head

The brand will sell you a gnarly ball, too

Who wants to play hoops with a severed head substituting for the basketball? Liquid Death, of course!

The canned water brand's always up for icky antics and marketing mayhem. This time, NBA star Jalen Green joins in the yucky fun.

C'mon, ref, decapitation's a clear foul! (Too bad that's not Tony Hawk's head or Martha Stewart's. Just sayin'.)

The brand is selling gratuitously gross Hoop Head balls for $125, too. Will Carsola, creator of Adult Swim's Mr. Pickles, handled design chores.

"Basketball is just another corner of culture that we thought would be fun to pop up in with our own style of entertainment," brand VP of creative Andy Pearson tells Muse. 

As for Green's participation, "We've been huge fans of Jalen's for a long time," Pearson says. "We hooked him up with some Liquid Death, and it turned out he was a fan of ours, too. Jalen really represents the next generation of basketball stars and fans. They hate traditional marketing as much as we do so it felt like we could join forces to create something that pokes at the traditional brand-athlete relationship."

Green's a Liquid Death investor, too. That's one way to get ahead. (Oof!)

"We knew we wanted to make a unique piece of memorabilia," Pearson says. "Basketballs felt like an obvious place to start, and basketballs are round like heads. The whole concept felt like one of those hairbrained toy ideas from the '90s," he recalls. "So, we went back and watched a lot of retro toy commercials, Gatorade commercials, Wheaties commercials. It was the stuff a lot of us grew up on."

During the shoot, "The kids were initially creeped out by the fake heads at first, but then they got really into it. It was hard to get them to stop playing with them between takes because they were having so much fun throwing a severed head around. That said, there was one kid who really didn’t like it. Their mom threatened to take away iPad time if they didn't touch the head."


Co-Founder/CEO: Mike Cessario
SVP of Marketing: Dan Murphy
SVP of Digital Retail: Hamid Saify
VP of Creative: Andy Pearson
VP of Marketing: Greg Fass
VP of Design: Franke Dresmé
VP of Cultwear: Misha Brunelli
Creative Director: Will Carsola
Associate Creative Director: Stu Golley
Senior Brand Manager: Tia Sherwood
Senior Nihilist: Brendan Kelly
Apparel Production & Sourcing Manager: Sean Snirk
Director: Daniel Stessen
Executive Producer: Johnny Eastlund
Senior Producer: Tatianna Rodriguez
Production Coordinator: Emily Draznik, Tanner Blount
Director of Photography: Mårten Tedin
Still Photographer: Arturo Almos
Gaffer: Josh Arriazola
Key Grip: Cesar Quintanilla
Wardrobe Stylist: Stefania Maso
SFX MUAs: Manny Lemus, Casey Jay Wong, Dahlia Carmichael
Location Manager: Chris Lacher

David Gianatasio
David Gianatasio is managing editor at Clio Awards.

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