Basketball star Lebron James has responded to President Donald Trump’s attack on Goodyear tyres – the most iconic company of his hometown Akron, Ohio – offering a shout-out of solidarity with the city, company and workers.
“Not only has Goodyear been great for my city, for the history of my city, but for the country,” James told reporters in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, where the NBA is playing during the pandemic.
“Unbelievable brand and unbelievable history. So, we stand strong, we always unite, especially my city.”
James commented on Thursday night, a day after the president called for a boycott of Goodyear, which employs more than 3,000 people.
Mr Trump inaccurately said the company had “announced a ban” on the Trump campaign’s Make America Great Again caps. Leaders of the city of fewer than 200,000 people are worried a boycott would worsen its struggling economy.
James, who led the Cleveland Cavaliers to their only NBA title during his second stint with the team, has been a steadfast supporter of community improvement projects in Akron. He jumped directly into the NBA from his state-champion St Vincent-St Mary’s High School team in Akron.
Now with the Los Angeles Lakers, he added: “We’ve always felt like we’ve been counted out, being a small city … and that’s what rallies us even more. It makes us even stronger.”