For the first time in his career, LeBron James will grace the cover of a video game.
LeBron James to be on cover of NBA 2K 14. pic.twitter.com/obvjWJQGqY— Eric Fisher (@EricFisherSBJ) June 7, 2013
James has pretty much checked every major accomplishment—NBA champion, Finals MVP, four-time regular season MVP, nine-time All-Star, two-time All-Star Game MVP, seven-time All-NBA First Team, five-time NBA All-Defensive First Team, scoring champion—off the list in his still young career, but there was always something missing: cover athlete.
Although, I suppose there is no better time than the present for James to be put on the front of one of the most popular sports games in the world...he is coming off one of the most spectacular seasons ever.
In 2012-13, the 28-year-old averaged a silly 26.8 points on .565/.406/.753 shooting to go with 8.0 rebounds, 7.3 assists, 1.7 steals and 0.9 blocks. His PER of 31.6 was the best of his career and he led the Heat to an amazing 66 wins and a spot in the NBA Finals against the San Antonio Spurs.
He has always been regarded as the best player in the world, but even in a year during which Kevin Durant took his own game to an impressive new level, James somehow widened the gap.
He deserves this honor. According to ESPN's Darren Rovell, the 2K series, which is the only NBA-licensed game currently on the market, has been steadily growing in popularity:
The last 3 NBA2K franchises have sold more than 5 million copies each. Last year's version was the most profitable.— darren rovell (@darrenrovell) June 7, 2013
Michael Jordan was on the cover for 2K11 before sharing it with Larry Legend and Magic Johnson the next year. Last year's edition featured current superstars Derrick Rose, Kevin Durant and Blake Griffin.
With 'Bron on the cover, the numbers should only continue to trend upward.