LeBron James Is Calling Out Nick Saban’s Culture Appropriation

LeBron James is calling out Nick Saban for jacking his creative genius and the Alabama coach isnt trying to hear it. Now King James has turned up and plans to take his beef to the courts.  

On Monday, a representative for James sent a letter on his behalf to Alabama, claiming the Crimson Tides Shop Talk trailer uses ideas, concepts and format from a program on the digital media platform the Cavaliers superstar co-founded.

Last year, James Uninterrupted aired The Shop, where the three-time NBA champion, Golden State forward Draymond Green and others talk in a barber shop, which as Saban stated is a common theme with sports shows. 

It is, but predominantly in the Black community, where barbers and the people of the community share a deep, complex and loyal bond that extends beyond just getting haircuts. The barber shop is a central point and driving spirit in the community, where people congregate, discuss the issues of the day, share personal conflicts and triumphs and of course, discuss the hot sports topics of the day. 

Ironically, the latest episode of the hit show Atlantafocuses on this cultural phenomenon.

Saban said he didnt know about James show, and contends the concept isnt new.

SportsCenter on Twitter

Neither LeBron nor Nick Saban is backing down from the copyright infringement dispute. https://t.co/s4KExx9FFg

Alabama released a trailer on Twitter for Shop Talk showing Saban and NFL receiver Julio Jones in a barber shop setting.

Uninterrupted sent a letter to Alabama, citing concerns over copyright infringement and intellectual property.

Following Tuesdays win over Toronto in Cleveland, James shot back at  Sabans defense of his show.  

Thats exactly what I would think he would say, James said. I built Uninterrupted for a reason and for us athletes to have a platform to be able to speak about whatever we want to talk about. I respect him as a coach, but Ill be damned if Ill allow someone to use our platform or try to do the same thing were doing and just think its OK.

Washington Post on Twitter

I’ll be damned if I’ll allow someone to use our platform”: LeBron James warns Nick Saban https://t.co/BprKLfI4H3

The lawyers will figure it out.

What James wanted to say is that hed be damned if he let Nick Saban, a man who has made millions off the backs of African-American athletes, further cake off on a culturally-appropriated show that the Black Community already owns. 

James was just choosing his words carefully, but by saying our platform, that is exactly what he meant. The concept of barbershop talk is a black-owned concept that James is against Saban profiting on. Our very own Rob Parker had a show in Detroit called Shop Talk for years. 

Shoptalk TV Show 9

Uploaded by Shoptalk TV on 2014-07-01.

Saban has eaten off the Black community long enough. The profits of that show isnt going back into the inner cities to improve conditions and it’s not building schools or educational programs for kids of color, and thats about the skinny of it. 

Back to top