Drake's "Forever" Video Proved What an Awful Poker Player LeBron James Was Before He Won a Title

By Stephen Douglas

Drake released the song “Forever” 8 years ago this summer. Featuring Kanye West, Lil Wayne and Eminem, the song was used on the soundtrack for “More than a Game,” the documentary about LeBron James and his high school teammates. Because of that connection, LeBron was heavily featured in the official music video. Let’s watch.

Talk about a different era. When this song was released, LeBron and the 66-win Cleveland Cavaliers had just been eliminated from the playoffs by Dwight Howard and the Orlando Magic. LeBron had just won his first MVP award.

The Cavaliers had failed to return to the NBA Finals for the second straight season. LeBron was still a year from announcing he was leaving Cleveland for Miami in The Decision. He was three years from winning his first title.

Kyrie Irving was still in high school. Stephen Curry had just been drafted by the Warriors. The Oklahoma City Thunder had only existed for a season and Kevin Durant had never been to the playoffs.

Kanye West was in between 808s & Heartbreak and My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. His current wife, Kim Kardiashian, was still two years from marrying Kris Humphries. The E! show “Kourtney and Kim Take Miami” was just debuting. Khloe Kardashian, who is currently dating LeBron’s teammate Tristan Thompson, was about to marry Lamar Odom.

Eminem was still cool. Relapse had come out in May.

Lil Wayne was still a martian.

You could legally play poker online. The video starts with LeBron James nodding happily as he went all-in very early in a heads up match with a pair of 4’s. If you look at the chat box, LeBron had timed out and auto-folded the previous hand. LeBron James is an infuriating online poker player.

Still, this is an era when online poker could afford prominent product placement alongside Ciroc in a rap video. And LeBron James hadn’t been to 7 consecutive NBA Finals or won 3 or brought a title home to Cleveland. It seems like it was forever ago.