"I know Great Lakes is trying to benefit off of me."
During Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals, LeBron James pretended to take a sip of beer after missing an easy layup late in the third quarter, a funny moment that Great Lakes Brewing Co. tried to capitalize on.
The beer company used a picture of LeBron holding the beer courtside in two tweets (that have since been deleted) to promote their Dortmunder Gold brew.
Great Lakes Brewing Co. used the photo in a tweet to announce that the brewery would offer discounts on its Dortmunder Gold pints and growlers at its pub, as well as another tweet which showed LeBron the beer and the caption, "G.O.A.T with the G.O.L.D."
However, LeBron and his legal team didn't appreciate Great Lakes Brewing Co. using his likeness.
LeBron told Cleveland.com prior to Game 2,
“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."
“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.”
The "Quitness" beer LeBron referenced was a beer Great Lakes Brewing Co. brewed in 2010 after LeBron left Cleveland for Miami, which they billed as “a dry hopped India pale ale that leaves a bitter aftertaste, perfectly describing the mood of Cleveland sports fans these days.”
According to ESPN, the company has since refrained from using LeBron's name and image in their marketing.