I so want this story to be true, because I want to believe in a secret Vegas only guys like LeBron James and Kanye West can buy their way into… but I also know the British tabloids make the TMZ look like the Washington Post. My head and heart are torn.
Our story starts here — remember that LeBron James is a part owner of the Liverpool Football Club, one of the powerhouse clubs of English soccer (something LeBron got as part of a marketing deal with the owners of Liverpool and the Boston Red Sox).
That would be the Liverpool side off to a dreadful 0-2-1 start. Liverpool fans are handling this about as well as Lakers fans would handle an 0-8 start.
So LeBron decided to motivate the troops with the promise of a decadent Las Vegas weekend if they win some hardware this year, reports the British tabloid The Sun, which seems to have taken the story down but The Daily Mail picked it up (hat tip to Andrew Sharp at SBN):
‘Everybody in sport needs incentive and if the guys at Liverpool win something this year I will give them the best weekend of their life in Vegas.
‘Kanye is in and trust me, nobody does Vegas like LeBron and Kanye.’
LeBron added: ‘We will take them to places in Vegas 99 percent of people don’t even know exist. There is Vegas and then there is Vegas.’
Again, I so want those quotes to be accurate…
But the head media relations person for Liverpool said LeBron never spoke to The Sun and the story was false.
What’s more, LeBron is just more media savvy than this. While I want to believe he would make this promise to the Liverpool players, LeBron has learned his media lessons well and would not just blurt those kind of comments out to a member of the press. Remember the uproar when a couple summers ago an ESPN reporter covered part of a LeBron and entourage night in Vegas? You think after that and working to rebuild his image he would blurt this out to one of the most sensational of the British tabloids?
But I so want to believe in LeBron’s secret Vegas — the kind of place Prince Henry would challenge Ryan Lochte to a swim race in a hotel pool — that I’m willing to forgive a lot.
But this quote doesn’t pass my smell test. And if the Sun has taken the story down… sorry Liverpool. You may just have to settle for Michael Owen.