LeBron James has become the NBA player that fans love to hate ever since he unceremoniously dumped his home state of Ohio and moved along to the Miami Heat last season to seemingly become part of some sort of freakishly unstoppable winning machine. Unfortunately for the Heat and its fans, the team was stoppable — even though it took until the NBA Finals to get the brakes to completely work.
And now, everyone in the NBA has been stopped, due to the lockout that owners and agents and players and veterans and league execs and tons of lawyers, among others, are busy trying to get untangled in order for some actual NBA games to be played this season.
Do you think all that dislike and the lack of a season is stopping the James Marketing Juggernaut? Of course not. It’s time for it to go into overdrive. One of his sponsors, Nike, is releasing a line of James off-court apparel featuring a lion logo designed to honor LeBron’s “heart of a lion.”
The generic-looking logo is “reminiscent of the coat of arms of medieval English monarchs such as King Richard the Lionheart,” according to USA Today.
LeBron also has a “Lion 6” logo that will be on T-shirts, rugby shirts, shoes, and jackets and, guess what? It’ll all be on sale in time for the holidays! A real surprise, right? Perhaps there will be some NBA games to wear all your new LeBron gear to as well.
The copy for the collection (revealed on Nike's Facebook page) proclaims, “Game after game. LeBron James' heart stays strong. The two-time NBA MVP has seen his fair share of battles. He's done his time on the hardwood. In the gym. And around the neighborhood. With every victory the beast within grows stronger. More determined. Fearless. Always on.”
That new Lion logo, by the way, made its first appearance last season when His I-ness returned to play the Cavs in Cleveland and “wore the all-wool ‘Destroyer’ jacket,” which wasn’t for sale at the time, USA Today reports. Now it will be.
Nike is also releasing a new set of $170 LeBron James sneakers that are inspired by the Air Force. The shoe is called “The Cannon” and is part of the LeBron 9 line of footwear. “The military-green theme is a nod to the Miami Heat having their first training camp since James joined the team last season at Hurlburt Field and Eglin Air Force Base,” the Associated Press reports.
The shoes will be released this weekend in South Florida before hitting store shelves nationwide.
Below, LeBron James models his new Nike collection, with a shout-out for another brand: he's sporting Beats by Dr. Dre headphones.