August 02, 2010
It has been nearly a month since we all watched our consensus favorite television program in the history of broadcast media — "The Decision." And while you might think that 25 days is enough time for Cleveland's anger towards LeBron James(notes) to subside a tiny bit, you would be unequivocally wrong. Those peeps are still mad. Really, really mad. We're talking angry billboard mad, which is one of the most intense forms of rage.
As you can see above, that rage manifested itself in a stark design usually reserved for signs advertising adult bookstores or bankruptcy info tapes. Nonetheless, the Omada Group took it upon itself to put LeBron in his place, which is apparently no longer Akron. NewsNet5's Curtis Jackson has the story.
The Omada Group, a marketing company in Akron, paid $3,000 for the billboard, which is on Route 18 eastbound between I-71 and I-77, about two miles from James' estate in Bath. The company paid about $3,000 for the billboard, which will be up for about a month.
Matthew Palumbo, one of the principals at the Omada Group, said he hopes the billboard sparks a grassroots campaign to let James know exactly where he stands in his home state since his decision to leave.
Look, I am not a marketing expert, nor am I an expert marketer. However, I'm pretty sure that grassroots campaigns don't usually start with massive billboards paid for by marketing companies. That's kind of the opposite of a grassroots campaign, and we should probably call it a treetop campaign because that is more accurate botanically.
That being said, the sentiments are a pretty nice zing, and I am an expert in those. I imagine LeBron not being able to call Akron his home will sting a little bit, considering he specifically mentioned that Akron would always be his home. Furthermore, he'll have a hard time shedding the "sidekick" tag, even if he goes out and averages a triple-double which is something that is scarily possible. Joining another alpha dog on his team is basically asking to be called Robin for the duration of your multi-million dollar contract. So it makes a lot of sense for Akron to heckle LeBron via billboard with those kind of taunts. Good work on that front.
But what doesn't make sense is crossing out "home." If this is supposed to be an angry billboard, then leaving the sentence as "Welcome LeBron" kind of misses the point. Unless Akron's just trying to be hospitable hosts by welcoming an opposing player, in which case, that is very nice of them.