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Nike drops new LeBron James spot, ‘The Tattoo,’ on eve of NBA Finals (vid)

Nike knows a thing or two about striking while the iron is hot. So, it makes perfect sense that the company debuted a brand-new LeBron James commercial on the eve of the superstar’s eighth consecutive appearance in the NBA Finals.

The new commercial, titled “The Tattoo,” traces the origin story of his famous “CHOSEN 1” tattoo. In it, a younger James is shown presenting a Las Vegas tattoo shop artist a piece of paper back in 2002.

“You sure this is what you want,” the tattoo artist asks. James replies, “Yes sir.” The artist remarks, “If you say so.”

“After the artist walks away for a moment, the camera pans to a smirking James and then shows the piece of paper with ‘CHOSEN 1’ on it,” via “Of course, that’s not only the giant tattoo James has across his upper back, but it’s also the phrase used on the cover of the Sports Illustrated cover story about the high school prodigy back in 2002.”

“I was worried, that we were going to ruin the kid’s life by putting him on the cover,” Grant Wahl, who wrote the cover story mentioned above, told The Undefeated in a 2017 interview, via “It’s one thing to do a feature on somebody inside the mag. But when you put a young kid on the cover and proclaim him ‘The Chosen One’ – maybe ‘ruin his life’ is a little strong, but it took things to such a level that I felt like his life was not going to be the same after that. The pressure would get a lot higher.”

Here’s the ad.

The spot concludes with a blackout before a Nike swoosh and the words “Always Believe” emerge.

After debuting only Wednesday, the new commercial already has garnered nearly three million views on YouTube. Mission accomplished.