According to Akron police, someone used spray paint to write “LaFlop” across the mural, which is on the outside of a local business. They also drew a clown nose on the former Cleveland Cavalier’s face.
The NBA superstar caused outrage among Ohioans when he left the Cavs in 2010 to play for the Miami Heat. He returned to the Cavs in 2014 only to leave again for the Los Angeles Lakers in 2018.
Police say the artist who painted the mural called them and wanted them to request video from the business owner, but an employee said the camera wasn’t working.
The artist told police she will try to clean off the spray paint.
James has spoken often in recent years about his off-court role in society, and how he values that part of his life as much as he does still being one of basketball’s elite players.
“I still know what I do on the floor and obviously, I give everything to the game,” James told AP in December. “But I can make a greater impact off the floor right now, more than I can on the floor. And I want to continue to inspire people with the way I play the game of basketball. But there’s so many more things that I can do off the floor to help cultivate people, inspire people, bring people together, empower them.”
“Space Jam: A New Legacy” was the largest pandemic opening for Warner Bros., which is significant since the studio in 2021 has been releasing all its films simultaneously in theaters and on HBO Max. It was the second installment of the “Space Jam” movies.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.