The moment the Cavaliers were ousted from the NBA playoffs late last week, the media hit the ground running (as if they hadn’t done so already) speculating where free agent LeBron James will sign this summer.
Knicks fans are some of the most passionate fans in the world and are desperate for a superstar of LeBron’s caliber to come lead the team and revive the city.
New York, which also happens to be one of the entertainment meccas of the world, has plenty of star-studded celebrities who are already (or could soon be) campaigning for “King James” to reign over the city.
In honor of number six — the number LeBron would likely wear as a Knick — here are six celebrities who could ultimately lure LeBron James to New York.
Spike Lee, Movie Director
Director Spike Lee, the Knicks’ ultimate fan, would be ecstatic to see LeBron James don orange and blue next season.
Lee, a season subscriber for many years now, must value himself as a true sixth man. He is frequently seen from celebrity row. Often jumping out of his seat, as well as throwing up his hands in excitement or frustration, Lee has also been known to chat and spar with the referees on occasion.
He genuinely loves the Knicks, and LeBron could take comfort in knowing Lee will have his back, on and off the court, should he sign with the Knicks.
CC Sabathia, Yankees Pitcher
Should two-time MVP LeBron make the jump from Cleveland to New York, at least he knows he will have someone by his side who has gone through the same transition in good friend and Yankee pitcher CC Sabathia.
Sabathia knows a thing or two about winning; he was the 2007 Cy Young Award Winner and experienced success after coming to New York, winning a World Series ring last season with the Yankees.
The two have been good friends dating back to Sabathia’s playing days with the Cleveland Indians, and Knicks fans can only pray that CC has been in LeBron’s ear telling him how great playing in a market like New York has been.
Sabathia sat courtside during Lebron’s last Madison Square Garden appearance as a Cav (hopefully) with the next celebrity on the list.
Yes, we all know that Jay-Z is part owner of the Nets, but rest assured that Jay-Z could potentially get LeBron into an “Empire State of Mind” as well.
Jay-Z is a true New Yorker at heart and knows how exciting NYC can really be. The Nets will be playing in Newark for the next two seasons, but even after they move to New York, Brooklyn is seemingly second-tier when it comes to the borough of Manhattan.
Jay-Z has filled up the Garden many times in his musical career and has even attended multiple Knicks games since becoming a Nets owner.
Should LeBron decide early on that New Jersey is not the place for him, it would not appear difficult for Jay-Z to switch gears and sell LeBron on the next best thing as far as he is concerned.
Nevertheless, Jay-Z is one celebrity who could make an honest pitch to his buddy about how fulfilling performing at MSG is.
Frank Iero, Musician
Jay-Z just may be outbid if LeBron is a fan of rock music.
My Chemical Romance guitarist Frank Iero is the latest celebrity to join the LeBron-to-Knicks-recruitment-team, taking to his Twitter to extend a very nice offer to LeBron, should he sign with the team: “I would like to sweeten the deal & offer LeBron free MCR tix for life if he decides to play for the Knicks next year,” with the hash tag, “LeBronshouldbeaknick.”
Granted, LeBron would probably be given access to any ticket he wanted at an MSG concert, but Iero could certainly hook him up with tickets for performances around the globe during the off-season.
LeBron should think down the road here; because when he retires, he may enjoy some courtesy tickets to go out head banging every once and a while to preserve his youthful spirit.
Donald Trump, Entrepreneur
Maybe Shaq can tell LeBron how cool “the Donald” is?
One of New York’s most recognizable faces, Trump is already rumored to be part of a new upcoming website, launched by the Knicks, piling up celebrities such as Jerry Seinfeld, (the already mentioned) Spike Lee, and Chazz Palminteri urging LeBron to sign with the Knicks.
Trump has been occupying a seat in celebrity row for quite a number of years, and knows New York City like no other entrepreneur does.
LeBron has said he wants to become sports’ first billionaire by expanding his multiple brands. An expert in succeeding in the New York marketplace, Trump could provide LeBron with some very meaningful advice
Who knows, the two may even choose to form some sort of partnership during LeBron’s potential tenure in orange and blue.
Donald Trump never turns down a good deal.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg
Even politicians have joined this massive recruiting process. While President Obama has endorsed the Bulls as his favored LeBron destination (what a bummer), New York City Mayor Bloomberg is ready to pull out all the stops to share the big stage with the “King.”
“If he calls me and says, ‘What’s it like to live in New York?’ I’ll give him a big sales pitch for New York.”
While celebrities like Iero used the internet to state their case, Bloomberg took to the airwaves last week during his radio show.
After calling New York “the world’s great stage,” Bloomberg added, “I love living in New York. My kids love living in New York. I think LeBron James would love living in New York.”
Upon hearing Bloomberg’s early pitch, Cavs owner Dan Gilbert said he “would think Mayor Bloomberg would have better things to do than that, and have more challenges.”
More important things than assuring LeBron James becomes a New York Knick? I think not.