LeBron James is gearing up for his big screen debut in the reboot/sequel to 90’s cartoon classic Space Jams. Unfortunately his PR advisor is pulling the focus away from the film after a leaked conversation between he and ESPN’s Rachel Nichols hit the net. In the clip, the two can be heard discussing some pretty problematic topics. Nichols admitted to her fear of taking a sideline coverage gig, worried that the ESPN was looking to give the main hosting responsibilities to black anchor Maria Taylor to appease diversity critics. LeBron’s publicist, Adam Mendelsohn, chimes in admitting he is exhausted with LeBron’s work within the Black Lives Matters and #MeToo movements.
LeBron and activism have gone hand and hand for a good chuck of his career. He was recently awarded with the President’s Award at the 53rd NAACP Image Awards back on March 27th. The prestigious honor was not lost on Bron, who took to the stage to accept the award with a powerful speech. He took the time to highlight voter suppression, another big cause near and dear to him, and his “More Than a Vote” initiative.
In 2014 he told Sports Illustrated he felt it was his duty to use his platform to help others. “I feel my calling here goes above basketball. I have a responsibility to lead.” he said at the time. In 2012 while playing for the Miami Heat, he and his teammates wore hoodies in tribute to Trayvon Martin. He also wore a shirt saying “I Can’t Breathe” in December of 2014 in support of Eric Garner and his family.
He drew some criticism from fellow athlete OJ Simpson, who felt like LeBron was jumping too fast to give his opinion before hearing all the facts regarding the death of Ma’Khia Bryant earlier this year. In a video posted to his twitter he said “You can’t fight every battle. This one, LeBron should’ve waited.”
It appears Adam Mendelsohn feels the same. Chiming in on LeBron’s work in Black Lives Matter and #MeToo saying “I’m exhausted. I’ve got nothing left.” Nichols can be heard laughing at his response.
While LeBron has yet to comment, Mendelsohn did release a statement. “I made a stupid, careless comment rooted in privilege and I am sincerely sorry. I shouldn’t have said it or even thought it.” He continued “I work to support these movements and know that the people affected by these issues never get to be exhausted or have nothing left. I have to continue to check my privilege and work to be a better ally.”