LeBron James, Jay-Z And Mikhail Prokhorov: The Nets For Greatness?

Michael HeaverContributor IJune 30, 2010

NEW YORK - MAY 18:  (EXCLUSIVE) Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov with cultural icon and Nets investor JAY-Z celebrate Prokhorov's purchase of the team at lunch today at JAY-Z's 40/40 club on May 18, 2010 in New York City. Prokhorov is representing the Nets tonight at the NBA Draft Lottery in which the team could secure the first pick.  (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for New Jersey Nets)
Larry Busacca/Getty Images

Mikhail Prokhorov, the New Jersey Nets' new Russian billionaire Owner is for real. 

Today, going into the free agent period, the Nets took to one of the largest billboards in New York, a stones throw away from the New York Knicks stomping ground. The billboard itself? Prokhorov, Jay-Z and the Nets team logo with the tag-line: "a blueprint for greatness".

With a potential name change, move to a brand new arena in Brooklyn and Prokhorov's ambition to create the NBA's first truly global brand, I'm willing to bet that LeBron James is more interested in the Nets than most have reported.

Not only could James become an instant legend in the Nets, but he could become the icon for what would be a virtually new franchise when the move to Brooklyn is complete. This is a franchise that intends not to simply compete with the New York Knicks in the Knicks own backyard, but to actively steal their fan base.

The deep pockets of Prokhorov and his achievements in business along with his calm and humorous demeanour show clearly that this is Russian could be the most able NBA Owner in the making.

The marketing opportunities for the King would be immense. LeBron James, the star of a Brooklyn Nets, or perhaps Brooklyn Ballas team, in the fashionable urban part of New York. Fronted by Jay-Z and backed by a multi, multi billionaire with a thirst to create a new dominant sports brand.

LeBron James could certainly do worse and if he does make the move, the Nets may soon be the talk of the Big Apple. Knicks fans everywhere should be worried.