Report: Tensions eased between LeBron James, brewery
After LeBron James criticized a Cleveland beer company for using his likeness to promote their brand on social media, a report suggests tensions have been eased between the parties.
The situation all started when the Cleveland Cavaliers superstar grabbed a bottle of beer and teased that he was going to take a sip during a Game 1 victory over the Toronto Raptors earlier this week.
LeBron James grabs a beer… pic.twitter.com/gKVBk5saXt
— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) May 2, 2017
Footage of the amusing incident not surprisingly quickly went viral. James joked after the 116-105 win that he may have taken a sip had the alcoholic beverage been wine instead of a cold brew.
But what drew James’ ire is how the beer company, Great Lakes Brewing Company, began to use the superstar’s likeness in a social media campaign to promote its brand, Dortmunder Gold. In one tweet, James was featured holding the beer along with the message “G.O.A.T with the G.O.L.D.”
James railed against the company co-opting him to promote the beer, saying his representatives were addressing the issue. He also made the point that the company in question was the same one who mocked his move to the Miami Heat with a beer.
“This is about the last thing I’m trying to worry about right now,” via ESPN. “My agent and my legal team will take care of it, but yeah, I know [Great Lakes] is trying to benefit off me,” he told the website. “And I heard they were the same company that made those ‘Quitness’ beers [which made fun of LeBron leaving Cleveland for Miami], and now they’re trying to benefit off me this way? Yeah, it’s pretty funny.”
Given that NBA players are prohibited from promoting alcohol products, James arguably had a solid point. Moreover, James’ personal brand nets him millions upon millions of dollars per year, and any infringement upon it is essentially taking money out of his pocket.
It now appears, though, that the issue has been settled. Per an ESPN source, “tensions had been eased” between James and the beer company after the tweets in question were taken down.
Now that’s a resolution worthy of a toast.