Basketball

Brewhaha: LeBron James’ legal team upset with brewery over photo with beer

Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James jokingly acts like he’s going to drink a fan’s beer during Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals Monday in Cleveland. The Cavaliers beat the Toronto Raptors 116-105.
Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James jokingly acts like he’s going to drink a fan’s beer during Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals Monday in Cleveland. The Cavaliers beat the Toronto Raptors 116-105. Akron (Ohio) Beacon Journal

LeBron James is in a bit of a brewhaha over his beer-bottle grab.

On Monday night, James jokingly swiped a beer bottle from a surprised courtside server during the third quarter of Cleveland’s playoff game against the Toronto Raptors and considered sipping it before handing it back. The exchange went viral on social media and James even kidded afterward that he wasn’t much of a beer drinker and would have taken a sip if it had been red wine.

James said his agent and legal team are upset over Great Lakes Brewing Company’s use of his image with the bottle.

On Tuesday, the brewery retweeted a photo of James holding its signature Dortmunder Gold beer with the caption: “G.O.A.T. with G.O.L.D.” The first set of initials stand for the “greatest of all time.” The tweet has since been deleted.

“This is about the last thing I’m trying to worry about right now, my agent and my legal team will take care of it, but yeah I know (Great Lakes) is trying to benefit off of me,” James told Cleveland.com. “And I heard they were the same company that made all those ‘Quitness’ beers, and now they’re trying to benefit off me this way? Yeah, it’s pretty funny.”

A spokesperson for James declined to comment.

A voicemail left with a spokeswoman for the brewery was not immediately returned.

Compiled by The Sacramento Bee’s Noel Harris

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