Wooing The King

Wooing The King

Ranking the Top 5 LeBron James Recruitment Billboards

With the summer of the LeBron James sweepstakes fast approaching, cities have taken to big billboards in the sky to woo King James. With so many candidates already, we decided to rank these 5 ads for their design, originality and downright pettiness.

5. The 6ix

C’mon Toronto, this has to be the most pathetic of all the LeBron recruitment entries.

For one thing, it’s displayed on 32-inch subway monitor. Even from up close you can barely make out the subtext and tiny maple leaf – not exactly a bold statement from Canada’s only NBA city. Secondly, it has to share screen space with the 3-day weather forecast and local traffic updates.


LeBron’s not good enough for full screen they had to give him the picture-in-picture? Disrespectful.

Finally, the backdrop for the ad is a dark and dingy subway, not exactly the most enticing for a man who appreciates the finer things in life. Sure, the TTC won 2017’s APTA Transit System of the Year but I don’t envision LeBron riding the rocket anytime soon.

4. Akron

Akron’s latest billboard display gives a nod to the Wizard of Oz, but leaves much to be desired.

I’ll start off with something I like. The “O” in “Home” is an outline of the state of Ohio, one point for creativity. What I don’t love is the fact that the billboard likens LeBron and his basketball shoes to Dorothy and her ruby red slippers – a comparison I’m not sure The King would be fond of.

Even worse, they used what looks like Adidas shoes in the ad!

Don’t they know LeBron is a Nike guy?

Don’t be surprised if the next installment of this billboard is an image of Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry and James Harden wearing pointy black hats and green face paint with a line about staying away from the “Wicked Witch of the West”.

3. Hollywood

Not to be outdone by Philly, an LA attorney bought four billboards and put them up around Los Angeles to entice #LABron.

They are mostly tacky designs, but I do appreciate the dig at the Sixers with the quote, “Forget the Process, we win Banner!” I wonder if Laker fans have billboard amnesia considering the Laker’s botched attempt at convincing Dwight Howard back to LA with the #STAYD12 billboards in summer 2013.

2. The Land

Cavs fans couldn’t just stand there and let Philly try to steal their man; they responded in a big way with this snarky, high-profile ad in Cleveland.

In case you didn’t notice it at first, that is a king’s crown with four of its five tines curved backwards to resemble a hand giving the middle finger! I guess Cleveland fans didn’t take kindly to Philly’s billboards and wanted to send them a big F-U. Well, I’m not sure it could get any bigger! The only thing that would have made this better is if it were actually displayed in Philadelphia across from their prized Rocky Statue. Now that would have been downright cold.

1. Philly

Of all the entries I’ve seen so far, Philly’s Three Billboards – the billboards that spawned this craze – has to take the crown.

First off, these billboards are situated on the I-480 in Cleveland, not Philadelphia where you’d expect to see them, but in the man’s own backyard!

LeBron could literally see these every time he returns home from the airport after an away game. In terms of theme, they cleverly reference one of the best movies of the year, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”, and were opportunely unveiled just before the Oscars to generate extra buzz. Visually the billboards are simple yet effective and convey three distinct factors of influence: teammates, city and mantra.


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