LeBron James is at it again, folks! From one media parade to another, King James certainly knows how to stir the pot off of the basketball court. First, there was the infamous decision press conference at which he announced on national television that he would become a part of the destined-to-be legendary Big Three in Miami. Then, there was the “Rise” Nike commercial. At this point it seems to go without saying that this was a bad public relations move. First, Mr. James wounded the citizens of Cleveland with his press conference. Then salt was rubbed in an open wound with the commercial, and parodies were born while sparks spewed from Ohio.
Trades in the NBA are just business, that is how the game works—everyone wants a championship and the league’s best players have discovered how to maneuver around to maximize their chances. However, it was more the way that LeBron went about it that began the gradual tarnishing of his image. Not to mention his recent Twitter rampage about Karma during the Cavaliers’ worst loss of the season, (although he later claimed the tweet was not his)—definitely not the best way to rebuild a broken relationship.
Now we arrive at today’s debacle: “The LeBrons”. Based on a series of Nike commercials about LeBron and his multiple personalities, “The LeBrons” is set to be a web series launched on YouTube as well as his website. As described by the New York Times’ Dave Itzkoff, the series “will consist of 10 episodes of five to six minutes each,” and “will center on the world of 16-year-old Kid LeBron and his life in Akron, Ohio, using authentic locations from that city, where Mr. James was born and raised.”
While there is no crime in broadening one’s horizon, from a public relations perspective Mr. James ought to consider sticking to what he is known for: his basketball talents. Twitter was abuzz with negative comments surrounding this announcement over the course of the past 48 hours, and a simple Google search of “LeBron James + Public Relations” will bring up hundreds of negative results sprinkled with a few positives. The takeaway here is that, while he undoubtedly has multiple talents and identities, Mr. James had better stick to his main one for the time being. My advice? Let the storm die down, King James, before you attempt to don that crown once more.