Le Batard’s “You’re Welcome, LeBron” Banner Raised In Cleveland
Dan Le Batard is at it again with his antics in true Le Batard form. Over the past month or so, the entire sportscaster lineup of 790 The Ticket in Miami has been mulling over how they personally feel about LeBron James’ departure from the Miami Heat and his “Decision 2” to return to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Le Batard has been truly the most passive and almost apathetic in his attitude simply saying how happy he was when LeBron was in Miami and grateful for the two championships and the most amazing four years in recent history of Miami sports. To no surprise, (if you listen to the show regularly,) his co-hosts Stugotz and Mike Ryan have expressed blatant and belligerent protest complete with empty threats to the point of comical. But it wasn’t till about two weeks ago that a sportscaster on a morning show came up with a hilarious “what if” and Le Batard, in his infinite lovable hubris, decided to run with it.
Almost in passing, Zaslow from the morning show satirically suggested that even though LeBron never thanked the fans in his famous letter to Sports Illustrated, it would be nice for the Miami fans to take the high road (a much higher road than Cleveland ever took the first time around,) and graciously receive the gratitude that technically hasn’t been given by buying a full-page ad in a Cleveland or Akron newspapers. Greg Cote, a Miami Herald newspaper veteran of 732 years and living dinosaur, initially theorized that a full-page ad would cost about $100,000. Le Batard ran with this at first just to please his child-like curiosity by asking just how much a full-page ad would cost. That’s when the “bleep” hit the fan.
Editors from both papers refused to tell them prices and even went on to say that they would never accept a dime of Miami’s “dirty money.” In the following days, articles from these Ohio-based newspapers were puffing out their preverbal chests saying that Le Batard actually offered them money for the ad and how they refused to not soil the paper’s pages with Miami propaganda. This brought out a side of Le Batard I had never heard before in all my years of listening to his show: he was mad. And the sleeping giant was awaken. He was now determined to figure out how to blatantly (but peacefully) troll Cleveland’s welcome-home party for LeBron scheduled on Friday. There’s speculation now of sending producer of the show Mike Ryan in a LeBron Heat jersey holding up a boombox over his head a la John Cusak in “Say Anything.” We’ll see if that actually happens but in the mean time, a billboard just went up this morning in Cleveland courtesy of Dan Le Batard with a simple “You’re Welcome, LeBron. Love, Miami” message with a photo of the two Miami Heat Championship Rings he helped the Miami Heat win.
Let’s see how Cleveland reacts.
Note: Photo courtesy of Miami Herald article by Greg Cote.