HoopsHype LeBron James rumors

October 9, 2014 Updates
October 8, 2014 Updates

Forbes estimates LeBron James has replaced Tiger Woods as the athlete with the top brand value. The magazine said Tuesday the brand of the Cleveland Cavaliers star is worth $37 million — the amount his endorsement and nonbasketball earnings exceed the average of the NBA's top 10. Woods had topped athletes on Forbes' Fab 40 list each year since 2007. Nike is estimated to be the most valuable sports business brand, with its worth pegged at $19 billion. Forbes said the value of the name increases Nike's worth from $52 billion to $71 billion. Associated Press

Some say winning fixes everything. For James that seemed to be the case. The more he won, the more marketable he became. He was no longer the villain, and he was about to take control of how he was portrayed off the court. LeBron, Maverick Carter and LRMR have been highly engaged with the development of LeBron’s most recent marketing campaigns. As pointed out by Michael Wilbon, LeBron has used non-traditional marketing channels for his brand activations. For Champs, James has a digital media-only deal. His Dunkin Donuts campaign aired only in Asia. James was also extremely involved with the production of his Beats By Dre commercial. The Fields of Green

James and LRMR understand that the marketplace is shifting. It is no longer enough to star in a television commercial during the Super Bowl. Athletes must engage consumers in myriad ways: digital and social media, streaming content and athlete-to-fan interaction. The fact that LRMR has recognized and succeeded in this space provides more value to LeBron’s partners. All of these endorsements have added up for LeBron, and this is likely just the beginning. LeBron heading back to Cleveland makes him even more likable. James already has deals with Nike, McDonalds, Samsung, Beats by Dre, Dunkin Donuts and Audemars Piguet watches, and he is in position to add more if he chooses. With Maverick Carter at his side, we know that whatever LeBron chooses will align with his marketing strategy. The Fields of Green

Miami Heat center Chris Bosh raised some eyebrows Tuesday when he said he hasn't talked to LeBron James since he returned to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Bosh made the revelation as he was asked about the Heat's game against the Cavaliers on Saturday when Bosh and Dwyane Wade will take the court for the first time against James, who decided to break up Miami's "Big Three" by returning to his native Ohio this offseason. Bosh and Wade, who were also free agents, chose to return to Miami. Asked by reporters if he had talked to his former teammate since James' decision to leave the Heat, Bosh answered a succinct, "No." ESPN.com

October 7, 2014 Updates

Based on one team's estimates, James could earn $28 million as a free agent in 2016—a 36 percent leap from his current salary. Assuming a four-year deal with maximum raises, James would earn an NBA-record $34 million in the final season, the most any player has earned in the max-contract era. Michael Jordan made a record $33 million in 1997-98, the season before the NBA capped individual salaries. Bleacher Report

Forbes estimates LeBron James has replaced Tiger Woods as the athlete with the top brand value. The magazine said Tuesday the brand of the Cleveland Cavaliers star is worth $37 million — the amount his endorsement and nonbasketball earnings exceed the average of the NBA's top 10. Woods had topped athletes on Forbes' Fab 40 list each year since 2007. Boston Herald

Yet the most serious early interest in Parsons in 2014 free agency actually came from Cleveland. It was widely assumed in Mavericks circles that Dallas would turn its attentions to Parsons once formally eliminated as an option by Melo and LeBron, but sources told ESPN.com that Parsons -- before things really heated up with his eventual new employers -- found himself being recruited by another All-Star peer he regards as a friend: Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving. Sources say the Cavs, furthermore, would soon inform Parsons he was "Cleveland's guy" if their ambitious bid to bring LeBron home unraveled. ESPN.com

Owners claiming losses in the next negotiations "will not fly with us," he said. The CBA expires after the 2020-21 season but either players or owners can opt out of the deal after 2016-17. "The owners were telling us they were losing money. There's no way they can sit in front of us and tell us that right now," James said. USA Today Sports

Paul was hands-on in making sure the events leading up to "Decision 2.0" were done tastefully and respectfully. James had meetings with only two teams - the Heat and Cavaliers - during the summer. Paul was considerate of not stringing teams along. "I wanted to be respectful of all organizations involved and you can only pick one, but I think it was important for him not to have a play-by-play of what he was doing," he said. Cleveland Plain Dealer

You'll also on occasion find him hanging out and socializing with his clients, something most agents tend to avoid. "Well, that's what they (agents) choose to do," he said while shrugging his shoulders. "There's an age and interest difference for a lot of them. It's not an agent-player relationship all the time. We're all young men that are in business together. That's how it is and it's unique. At the same time, I understand it, but again, there's no right or wrong way to represent a client. "I'm 33 years old. If a guy is 24, chances are we listen to the same music and like some of the same clothes. We may do things together and hang out. It's a false perception of what that relationship should look like. That thinking has been set upon us to create this difference between players so that the player perceives the agent as all business. Other agents have fun, too. Players just aren't interested in doing the things they do. Cleveland Plain Dealer

Bronny is already on the on the scouting radar for the Ohio State Buckeyes, catching the attention of the teams coach, Thad Matta. The coach has been asked if Bronny would be on a list of future college recruits and he says, “He will be.” Business 2 Community

October 6, 2014 Updates

James is not the Cavaliers' representative to the players' union -- the responsibility belongs to James Jones -- though James acknowledged that he holds a great deal of power because of his star status. He is also close to Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul, who is the players' union president. James denied that he and Paul were seeking to do away with maximum contracts – which place a limit on what every player can earn -- but he also suggested the players would seek to reap more of the benefits from the new TV deal. Cleveland Plain Dealer

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