Hip-hop mogul Jay-Z is kicking off an unprecedented marketing campaign to lure disgruntled Knicks fans to the new home of the Nets come next fall.
The Brooklyn-born rapper, who has never before linked his powerful brand with the team he partly owns, revealed the team’s new name -- the Brooklyn Nets -- Monday as part of the marketing launch.
The Barclays Center in Prospect Heights’ is set to open next year. Jay-Z will christen the stadium with a concert, he said Monday.
"Maybe one, maybe two, maybe three" concerts, he said, adding, "I sound like LeBron."
LeBron James made a proclamation when the Miami Heat's Big Three were introduced in 2010, saying of the championships they would win: "Not two, not three, not four, not five, not six, not seven."
Jay-Z's personal brand will also pepper the multitude of billboards, taxi ads, telephone booths and even coffee cups the team plans to use in its widespread marketing campaign.
The Nets will offer ticket-holders season packages that include bonuses like free food and a priority in purchasing boxing or concert tickets at the arena in an effort to differentiate the team from its Manhattan-based rival.
“The message is that the Barclays Center is much more than basketball,” Net CEO Brett Yormark told the New York Post. “There will be great concerts and other entertainment – so who better to deliver that message than the world’s No. 1 entertainer Jay-Z?”
Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov is the majority owner of the Nets. The team has filled more than half of the stadium’s premium seats since they went on sale in April.