LeBron James is embarking on a new business venture with DraftKings. The four-time NBA champion and recognized global superstar recently announced an advertising partnership with the leading US sportsbook. Known for its high spending on marketing and celebrity endorsements, DraftKings has reportedly secured one of its most expensive endorsement deals to date with James. At 39 years old, the basketball icon has a storied career that includes four titles, four MVP awards, and a record 20 NBA All-Star appearances.
To announce the partnership, James shared an image on his X account showing him performing his traditional pregame routine of throwing chalk powder into the air, forming the DraftKings crown logo. He tweeted, “Football season just got A LOT more fun.” According to DraftKings representatives, James will make weekly picks on the NFL games next season.
DraftKings’ new marketing tagline, “The Crown is Yours,” was launched ahead of ESPN Bet’s emergence in 17 states. The sportsbook’s X account welcomed LeBron James with a tweet saying, “From one King to another, welcome to the team, LeBron.” DraftKings’ co-founder and CEO, Jason Robins, expressed his excitement, saying, “Welcoming one of the most influential and greatest athletes of all time, LeBron James, to the DraftKings family is an absolute honor and privilege.”
With DraftKings and FanDuel controlling about 70% of the US sports betting market, the competition from other sportsbook giants like Fanatics and Penn Entertainment’s ESPN Bet has failed to significantly impact the two leaders. DraftKings is also known for using celebrities and sports icons to promote its sports betting and iGaming business.
Additionally, the sportsbook’s rival, BetMGM, is set to release a 30-second Super Bowl ad featuring NFL and NHL legends Tom Brady and Wayne Gretzky, as well as Hollywood A-lister Vince Vaughn. Similarly, FanDuel is running a Super Bowl ad with former NFL tight end Rob Gronkowski attempting a 25-yard field goal live with $10 million in free betting credits for customers on the line. While DraftKings is not airing a commercial during this year’s Super Bowl, it continues to dominate the sports betting and iGaming industry in the US.