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DraftKings Lands Sports Betting Partnership With LeBron James: NBA Star To Give Out NFL Picks

Mark Strotman for Bookies.com

Mark Strotman  | 4 mins

DraftKings Lands Sports Betting Partnership With LeBron James: NBA Star To Give Out NFL Picks

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When Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James sent out a cryptic tweet on Wednesday morning, many assumed it was basketball-related.

The Lakers have been at the center of trade discussions over the past week, and rumors are bound to heat up with Los Angeles losing two straight and four of its last seven and that the Feb. 8 trade deadline is fast approaching.

The Lakers might add Dejounte Murray, Zach LaVine, or another complementary player to join James and Anthony Davis. But that cryptic tweet was a teaser to the future Hall-of-Famer’s newest venture into the world of online sports betting.

James To Provide Insight On NFL Games

James is joining DraftKings in an official capacity on a multi-year deal and will provide insight on NFL games and, we assume, other sports. 

The NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement forbids James from providing insight on or picking NBA games, but he’ll be able to offer up selections and analysis on all other sports.

DraftKings CEO and Chairman Jason Robbins quote-tweeted James’ announcement and added that “[w]elcoming one of the most influential and greatest athletes of all time, LeBron James, to the DraftKings family is an absolute honor and privilege. We look forward to working with a passionate sports fan who shares the same competitive mindset that echoes throughout the walls at DraftKings while delivering exciting engagement opportunities to our customers and his loyal fanbase for years to come.”.

James went viral during the current NFL season by picking games while live-streaming on Instagram, and the timing of the announcement makes perfect sense with Super Bowl 58 between the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers less than two weeks away. It’s unknown what kind of analysis of picks James will provide, but it could start as early as some Super Bowl selections.

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James, who dominated on the gridiron in high school at St. Vincent-St. Mary is a lifelong Dallas Cowboys fan and has also been seen attending Los Angeles Rams games ever since he signed with the Lakers in free agency in 2018. That move to LA turned James into an even bigger global icon, with his recent ventures including a lead role in Space Jam 2: A New Legacy. 

LeBron has numerous endorsements, including part ownership in Liverpool FC and the Boston Red Sox. He became a billionaire in 2022, and the DraftKings partnership will only add to his net worth and global reach.

James is the first known NBA player to form this sort of partnership, but it’s not an unprecedented move in the online sports betting world. Colorado Rockies outfielder Charlie Blackmon signed a deal with MaximBet and NHL superstar Connor McDavid signed a deal with BetMGM, both in 2022. Though McDavid is the best player in the NHL, James’ status as a global icon makes this deal with DraftKings unlike any we’ve ever seen before.

DraftKings hasn’t been shy about investing in big names over the last few years. One of the industry’s top online sportsbooks, DraftKings added Michael Jordan as a special advisor to its Board of Directors and other partnerships include David Beckham, Snoop Dogg, Kevin Hart, Shannon Sharpe, David Ortiz, and others.

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About the Author

Mark Strotman for Bookies.com
Mark Strotman
Mark is a veteran sports betting journalist who has covered the Bulls and the NBA since 2012. His work has appeared on ESPN.com, FoxSports.com, The Chicago Tribune and Yahoo Sports. He regularly provides NBA betting picks, as well as in-depth sportsbook reviews and the latest promo codes for all the major sports gambling operators, including Caesars Sportsbook, BetMGM, DraftKings, FanDuel and more.