The Grey Cup's been in plenty of unusual situations over the years. It's been used in celebrations on B.C. mountaintops and in Toronto strip clubs, it's survived Taliban rocket attacks in Afghanistan, and it was even stolen and briefly held for ransom in 1969. Thus, being held by Miami Heat stars LeBron James and Dwyane Wade is far from the weirdest thing that's ever happened to the trophy. It's probably the weirdest thing that's happened to it so far this year, though.
What led to the photos of these Heat stars holding the Grey Cup at Toronto's Real Sports bar? Well, the Heat are in town for Sunday's game against the Raptors, and some of their players apparently decided to head out to the opposition's bar the night before. (Real Sports is owned by Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, which also owns the Raptors.) There, it sounds like they ran into a bunch of Toronto Argonauts who were celebrating with the Grey Cup; the photos here come from Argonauts' receiver Mike Bradwell, who was part of an Argonauts' group that was honoured at the Maple Leafs' game the previous night. (We've now mentioned the Raptors, the Leafs and Real Sports in this post: hurrah for MLSE synergy!) You can see LeBron with the trophy up top; here's another photo Bradwell took of Wade holding it.
Of course, the funniest part here is that James has mused about trying professional football at some point. He was a successful high school football player and drew some notable recruiting interest, and his ridiculous athletic gifts are well-known, so it's not completely out of the question. It would seem silly for the man who's arguably on top of the basketball world to abandon that, but hey, that happened before (and was only remedied thanks to the intervention of Bugs Bunny and the Looney Tunes!). If James did try football, though, it would undoubtedly be with some NFL team that took a chance on him; he's not giving up his $17,545,000 annual NBA salary (which is still likely less than he's worth) to make $100,000 or so in the CFL. Oh well, the sight of him with the Grey Cup is still quite amusing. Remember, LeBron did come to Miami to win "not one, not two, not three, not four, not five, not six, not seven" championships. Wonder if he counts holding the Grey Cup as one of those?
Hat-tip to Kate McKenna.