LeBron James is one of the biggest pop culture icons on the planet.
James is also one of the leaders of the new generation of politically “woke” athletes.
And now LeBron James spent all summer protesting Donald Trump. This is what happened next.
Low ratings have been one of the dominant stories across the sports landscape after leagues resumed games following a coronavirus induced hiatus.
One of the main reasons is the anti-American protests led by LeBron James that many in the NBA, NFL, MLB, and NHL used to protest President Trump.
But fans are fed up with athletes throwing their politics in their faces.
And they are voting with their TV remote controls.
On Wednesday, LeBron James’ Los Angeles Lakers played game one of the NBA Finals against James’ former team the Miami Heat.
James famously left his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers for the Heat as a free agent in the summer of 2010 in a famous ESPN special The Decision where James uttered the memorable line about “taking my talents to South Beach.”
The NBA was set up for a finals matchup featuring their biggest star against a team he led to two championships in what should have been a made for TV blockbuster.
Instead, ratings for game one were down 45 percent and were the lowest since 1994 – a year considered the NBA dark ages as it was the first season after Michael Jordan initially retired from the NBA and the league had no marquee superstar.
The Hollywood Reporter wrote:
The opening game of the series between the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat brought 7.41 million viewers to ABC, the smallest audience for the finals since at least 1994, when total viewers began to be regularly recorded. The previous low was 8.06 million for Game 3 of the 2007 NBA Finals.
The game, which took place about four months later than the usual start date for the NBA Finals, was down by about 45 percent in total viewers vs. the U.S. audience for last year’s finals opener between the Golden State Warriors and Toronto Raptors. The two conference finals series that wrapped up last week were down a collective 35 percent year to year. The NHL’s Stanley Cup Finals series, also delayed by several months, was down by more than 60 percent for NBC Sports. Major League Baseball has also struggled during its shortened season.
Sports in American have permanently damaged their relationship with the fan base because of these political protests.
The leagues and athletes have made it clear that unless you are a Black Lives Matter acolyte or Joe Biden voter, sports are not for you.
Sports with Balls will keep you up-to-date on any new developments in this ongoing story.