Can Lebron James appeal to new sports activities bettors? That’s what DraftKings is betting on after lately signing the NBA celebrity as an envoy.
The multi-year deal focuses on soccer, not basketball, with James making a weekly decide as a part of the settlement. The legendary participant is a serious soccer fan and is understood to supply up his personal alternatives by way of social media all through the season. Those alternatives will now be a part of the DraftKings umbrella.
“LeBron will help support key football initiatives and tentpole events through content creation, such as weekly football picks and more,” the corporate famous in saying the signing.
Teaming Up With DraftKings
Terms of the deal weren’t introduced, however James seemingly acquired a large sum to assist promote the model. The NBA’s all-time main scorer has greater than 52 million followers on Twitter and nearly 160 million on Instagram, and already sports activities endorsement offers with manufacturers equivalent to Nike, McDonald’s, AT&T, Beats, Crypto.com, GMC, and Pepsi that paid out an estimated $80 million in 2023.
The deal comes as main sports activities betting operators proceed a advertising arms race that includes offers with groups, leagues, and particular person gamers to draw extra clients. DraftKings and FanDuel proceed to guide the market with BetMGM, Caesars, and others seeking to compete as effectively. In August, Penn National Gaming additionally introduced a deal to launch an ESPN-branded cellular sportsbook as effectively.
As a part of his deal, James is solely specializing in soccer handicapping because the NBA doesn’t enable gamers or coaches to publicly focus on betting on the league’s video games. The deal may additionally be a coup for DraftKings, contemplating ESPN has lengthy been an NBA broadcast accomplice.
The transfer is a stark distinction to the place U.S. sports activities leagues had been only some years in the past. Sports betting was seen as a corrupting pressure by many within the sports activities trade. Now many gamers and the leagues themselves are partnering with sportsbooks, and this 12 months’s Super Bowl is even being performed in Las Vegas for the primary time.
This will not be the one deal within the works for DraftKings. Rumors have swirled lately that the corporate could also be inking a take care of Barstool Sports within the coming weeks.