“Complete The Process.”
That’s the message being sent on a billboard to LeBron James by a Philadelphia-area remodeling company, which has purchased three giant advertisements on Interstate 480 in Cleveland in a Hail Mary attempt to convince the Cavaliers superstar to sign with the Sixers.
Power Home Remodeling, a roofing and remodeling company based in Chester, purchased three billboards, all of which will be seen by Cleveland commuters (and hopefully, James himself) for the next three months. ESPN’s Darren Rovell was first to report about the billboards Monday morning.
One of the other billboards shows a maroon #23, James’ number, on the court next to blue numbers representing the Sixers’ starting lineup of Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid, Dario Saric and Robert Covington. Another billboard bluntly says, “#PhillyWantsLebron.”
Asher Raphael, the company’s CEO, said his goal wasn’t to advertise for his company, which doesn’t have any employees or offices in Cleveland. He said he wanted to reach James in an attempt to sell him on signing with the Sixers when he becomes a free agent following this season.
“It was really just trying to get the talk that LeBron should come to Philly because it’s an amazing city, and it’s a place he can come win titles right away and establish himself as the best player ever,” Raphael said. “He would love playing here.”
Raphael wouldn’t say how much the billboards, which went up Monday, cost.
He said he was inspired by the award-winning movie “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri,” and initially didn’t want to include his company’s logo, but added it after the billboard company considered the three-month buy a political advertisement.
“This was really just about getting [James] to the Sixers, and Power really wasn’t supposed to be part of the story,” Raphael said. “So I assume we’ll probably get trolled a little bit.”
The billboards are close to Quicken Loans Arena, where the Cavaliers play.
“The whole idea of ‘The Process’ was getting these young kids to build a foundation and create some cap space, and then bring in one or two veterans,” Raphael said. “I think this is exactly what [former Sixers GM Sam] Hinkie’s design was.”
There certainly has been some buzz this season about James possibly coming to Philadelphia. The Ringer’s Bill Simmons cited four reasons why James ending up with the Sixers makes sense:
“The Sixers have enough cap space and trade assets to accommodate LeBron and the likes of, say, PAUL GEORGE; Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid are two of the league’s best under-25 blue-chippers (young legs!); Klutch represents LeBron and Simmons (hmmmmm); and NBA insiders have been gossiping about an increasingly cozy Philly–LeBron’s circle connection since November.”
That increasingly cozy Philly-LeBron connection Simmons mentions includes glowing comments James made about Embiid’s personality during the All-Star Weekend. “Off the court he’s just being himself,” James said. “He is who he is. That’s special. When you’re authentic, I think people gravitate toward that.”
James also posed for an Instagram photo with Sixers forward Ben Simmons.
The Sixers will travel to Cleveland to take on the Cavaliers on Thursday.