Word out of the LeBron James Skills Academy is that Xavier's Jordan Crawford turned the camp's host into his own personal Fred Weis, the sort of moment for which God created YouTube. Then along came Nike to confiscate the evidence.
CBSSports.com's Gary Parrish has the story:
Turns out, there were at least two cameras rolling Monday night when Crawford dunked on James during a pick-up game here at the LeBron James Skills Academy. It was a two-handed jam, the kind that would've circulated quickly on YouTube. But Nike officials eliminated that possibility shortly after the dunk happened by allegedly confiscating tapes from various cameramen.
Freelance photographer Ryan Miller was one of the cameramen shooting the game.
He told CBSSports.com that Nike Basketball Senior Director Lynn Merritt took his tape.
"He just said, 'We have to take your tape,'" Miller said. "They took it from other guys, too."
Worth noting is that there is no policy against filming at the LeBron James Skills Academy, and Miller said he had been filming all day without incident. Nobody ever told him to stop. Nobody ever said there was a problem ... until after Crawford dunked on James.
"LeBron called Lynn over and told him something," Miller said. "That's how I knew his name was Lynn. LeBron said, 'Hey, Lynn. Come here.'"
Minutes later, Miller said Merritt demanded his tape.
"There's nothing I can think of besides LeBron just not wanting it online," Miller said. "It's a good story to tell people, I guess. But then again, I'm kind of pissed. I lost my tape."
If that's how it went down — if King James really sent a Swoosh drone to go all FBI-in-Dealey-Plaza on the cameramen — then that's surpassingly lame. Give the kid his YouTube moment. Congratulate him. Shake him by the hand. Or, you know, don't.
Nike does not want you to see that dunk [CBSSports.com]