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Elon Musk is trolling LeBron James by paying for him to be verified on Twitter

LeBron James vowed not to pay for Twitter, so Elon Musk is doing it for him either out of desperation or to troll him.

2023 NBA Playoffs - Los Angeles Lakers v Memphis Grizzlies Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images

Because Elon Musk is definitely a grown adult, Thursday, or 4/20, marked the final day formerly verified accounts would have their blue checkmarks. Outside of debating the hellscape that Twitter has become, the removal of blue checkmarks for those who won’t pay — which is most people — for it has only caused chaos.

LeBron James — an avid Twitter user — was among those who were not going to pay for Twitter Blue to keep that checkmark. He even tweeted so recently.

The astute observers will see that LeBron still has that blue checkmark. How can that be if everyone else’s is gone? Did he lie to us and pay for Twitter Blue?

Well, that’s certainly what Twitter initially thought!

However, the truth is actually something either far more funny or desperate. It appears Elon himself is paying for Twitter Blue for a number people, as he confirmed.

Many hypothesized that Elon let certain people keep their blue checkmarks after they openly criticized Twitter/Elon himself. Stephen King also very publicly said he would never pay for a checkmark.

However, in the article linked that Elon is responding to, it paints the more desperate side of that. According to that report from The Verge, representatives from Twitter offered the checkmark for free to LeBron.

The Verge has confirmed that an employee at Twitter emailed James, who has previously said he wouldn’t pay for verification, to “extend a complimentary subscription to Twitter Blue for your account, @kingjames, on behalf of Elon Musk.”

We contacted James’ longtime media advisor, Adam Mendelsohn, who confirmed that James hasn’t paid to be verified. However, after we first published this information, Musk said that he’s paying for “a few” subscriptions “personally.”

There are others who have been outspoken about Twitter Blue that also have their checkmarks. So, it appears, Musk might be paying for the accounts of those who have publicly been outspoken about paying for Twitter?

Again, grown adult.

As of the time of publish, LeBron hasn’t tweeted since all of this played out. In fact, he’s only tweeted twice in the last week, which has more or less coincided with the start of the postseason for the Lakers.

You can follow Jacob on Twitter at @JacobRude.

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