LeBron James is all about dollar signs. When we all tune into ESPN at 9 p.m. tonight to find out if Mr. James is going to be a New York Knickerbocker or not — a special hour called “The Decision — Mr. James will be interviewed by a journalist of his choosing. He also picked the location of the special. ESPN even ceded control of advertising for the hour to Mr. James marketing company LRMR for free.
The only commercial time in the hour-long special not featuring Mr. James’s sponsors is the local time designated to cable and satellite operators, said Norby Williamson, ESPN’s exec VP-production. Mr. James’ representatives approached the network with the idea, he said.
ESPN said the deal was not equivalent to paying the athlete for the scoop.
We’d like to have that one explained to us. What would paying Mr. James for a scoop look like exactly? And, even so, paying for scoops is alright now, we thought.