*While some LeBron James fans may have gripes about his leaving the Miami Heat to return to Northeast Ohio to rejoin the Cavaliers, word is the return of the star forward will have an astonishing $500 million a year impact on the local economy as a result of the expected boost in direct and indirect spending. This according to Bloomberg.com.
Prior to James’ exit the first time, he had been with the Cavaliers from 2003-2010 without much fanfare in regard to attract other high-end players to the team; but since that time, his star power has increased, and now, with two NBA championships behind him, so has his worth.
The Cuyahoga County Fiscal Office has already forecast what an increase in attendance motivated by James’ return will generate – about $268 million. And this does not even tap into the money that will come from the spending windfalls at hotels, restaurants, and convention business; along with an anticipated $34 million increase in annual spending by fans at the games.
And did we mention the increase in jobs? How about an additional 500 jobs supported by the Cavaliers.
Guess what all of this means for the county? They expect a $3.5 million increase in admissions tax which will be put towards the debt that occurred when the attendance fell.
James’ return will prove to be a win-win for all vested parties. Let’s just hope its enough to placate the unforgiving attitudes of fans who resented LeBron leaving in the first place.
“If there’s anyone willing to forgive LeBron, it’s our fiscal officer,” according to Nathan Kelly, county deputy chief of staff for economic development. In the video below, attorney Damario Solomon-Simmons says that because LeBron’s value is so high, he should be given part ownership of the team.
Take a look.