The 'Lean Mean Grilling Machine' celebrates a milestone this week, but it's a rare breed indeed
As the George Foreman Grill turns another year older, it's worth remembering that not all sporting endorsements end up being a roaring success.
Former boxer George Foreman, turned "king of the grill", earned a whopping $137 million for his endorsement, as well as more for public appearances related to its promoton, and has described putting his name on the contract as one of the best decisions he's ever made, as it helped him to give up boxing because "it was sort of getting in the way of my business life then".
This week in 1999: Salton pays George Foreman $137.5M for lifetime rights to his name for its electric grills. pic.twitter.com/XSfEQeIcoW— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) December 7, 2015
However, a number of sporting figures have similarly tried to get their names out there by endorsing a range of products, from kitchen accessories to food stuffs, few of which have succeeded. Here's a look at just a few of them.
Hogan has claimed in the past that it would have been his name on the grill, were it not for the fact that he missed a call from his agent while picking up the kids from school (the days before mobiles, eh?). However, he's gone on to endorse a huge number of products since, few of which have been roaring successes, such as his Pastamania restaurants.
Following the example of George Foreman, Jackie Chan tried to jump on board the money making machine that is kitchen grills, but since the first we ever heard of his version of it was in the course of researching this piece, it's probably fair to say the success was limited.
A photo posted by Adam White (@adamawhite) on Dec 7, 2015 at 5:32am PST
What is this mouth exercise thing? Not a clue. What does it do? Again, no idea. Either way, Cristiano Ronaldo got a cheque to put his name to it, so he has a toned, beaming smile on his face all the way to the bank.
This one is on the list, not so much for its success or lack thereof, but because of the ironic twist it would take. O.J Simpson, the same man who advertised a car company and was seen 'on the run' in a Hertz commercial, would later take Los Angeles police on a low-speed car chase that lasted for hours as he was wanted for questioning about the murder of his wife.
Hulk Hogan (again!)
The story goes, as mentioned previously, that Hulk was offered the chance to put his name on what we now know as the George Foreman Grill. Hulk was too late to respond, however, and the offer was taken off the table. Hulk decided instead that he would put his name on the Thunder Mixer. Needless to say, it did not sell well and is now an embarrassing footnote in Hulk Hogan's career.
One of the hardest hitting and scariest American football players of all time and snuggling beside a cosy fire and drifting off to sleep have absolutely nothing in common in a logical world. Who sanctioned this?
Beckham decided it was a good idea to sell Omega-3 Fish Fingers with his name on them. To be fair, Beckham's reasoning for getting involved sounds promising but the actual product? No chance.
We are not even sure how this one sold but given the embarrassing branding on the iced bottle, we had to enter Shaq's "Luv Shaq" branded vodka on the list.