Before the Raptors traded for Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green, McDonald’s had formed a partnership to give away free french fries in Ontario every time the made 12 3-pointers in a game
The promotion went on to cost McDonald’s millions more than they initially predicted to spend with DeMmar DeRozan on the team.
Nearly a year later, the Raptors are indeed at the next level, ahead two games to one in the first NBA finals in franchise history — and McDonald’s is out more than two million medium-size orders of french fries.
That’s nearly three times the 700,000 orders the company projected its Ontario restaurants would give away during the promotion.
Coolen said they based the forecast model, in part, on a previous fry giveaway program with the Montreal Canadiens.
Not only did the Raptors hit more three-pointers this season but fans were more eager to go out and pick up the free fries as the team’s popularity grew.
The Raptors’ three-point shooting, though slow in the early part of the season, outpaced the previous season, but not by much.
Last season, the Raptors hit 12 or more three-pointers in 43 of 82 games, and added another five games in the playoffs. This season the three-point threshold was reached 44 times in the regular season and another 10 — so far — in a much longer playoff run.
McDonald’s didn’t underestimate the Raptors so much as it did the appetite for free fries in Ontario. The regular season’s two million free orders — at an average menu price of $2.89 — was $5.4 million worth of fries.
Unfortunately for McDonald’s people are still cashing on free fries during the Finals.
While full tallies for the playoffs were not available, in Game One of the finals alone, where the Raptors hit 13 threes, McDonald’s gave away a record 80,000 free orders.