Murals in the city: How Sekanskin covered the Toronto Raptors’ journey to the NBA finals

Building more momentum 

For this mural, Sekanskin wanted to go bigger than before—rather than just having Leonard—the new design featured all five starting players as well as Drake giving head coach Nick Nurse the much-publicized shoulder rub.

For this mural, Sekanskin wanted to go bigger than before—rather than just having Leonard—the new design featured all five starting players as well as Drake giving head coach Nick Nurse the much-publicized shoulder rub.

When the Raptors beat the Milwaukee Bucks and secured their spot in the National Basketball Association (NBA) finals, Sekanskin knew it was time to update the mural to further heighten the buzz surrounding the project. This time, Sekanskin wanted to go bigger than before—rather than just having Leonard—the new design featured all five starting players as well as Drake giving head coach Nick Nurse the much-publicized shoulder rub. They also updated the interior vinyl wallcovering to show Leonard dunking over Buck’s forward Giannis Antetokounmpo to allow fans to place themselves in the moment. Again, media outlets in Toronto and the surrounding area picked up the story. In fact, ESPN visited and broadcasted its NBA program in front of the mural.

We are the champions

With the Raptors solidifying the championship title in game six of the NBA finals, Sekanskin was prepared with a new design. The team produced a 2.4-m (8-ft) gold chrome Larry O’Brien Trophy with the Raptors’ logo and installed it on victory night to a crowd of cheering fans. The following day, Sekanskin designed/photoshopped eight players from different photos to create a team shot of the champagne celebration. The goal was to allow fans to immerse themselves in the Raptors’ victorious moment. The last wallcovering was so successful that when Tetra created T-shirts based on the image, they sold out immediately. Overall, this campaign reached more than 50 million people through various news and social media outlets including The Score, TSN, The Raptors, blogTO, Snoop Dogg, and Sign Media Canada. Though the murals have been removed, the impact and momentum they helped create for the city’s first NBA championship is timeless.

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Anthony Spadafora is a partner at Sekanskin. He can be reached at anthony@sekanskin.com.

 

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