LeBron James is already scoring big for the Los Angeles Lakers — and the season hasn't even started.
With the regular season set to begin on October 16, the newest star of the storied franchise is driving up ticket prices not only at home, but in nearly every city he plays in. At the Staples Center alone, ticket prices are up 427 percent over last season according to StubHub. However, it's not just at home: Road games for the Lakers are once again a big draw.
"When the Lakers come into different markets, we are seeing a massive pop," said Scott Jablonski, StubHub's general manager of the NHL, NFL and NBA. "It's been one of the bigger things we've seen."
The most in-demand NBA game for the upcoming season is opening night, when the Houston Rockets visit the Lakers: The average ticket for that game is $934.
The second most expensive game is Christmas Day, when the Lakers go to Oakland to take on the defending champion Golden State Warriors. Tickets there average just over $700, a 120 percent increase from last Christmas. (And in case you're wondering, Cleveland has fallen off the radar. Ticket sales for the Cavaliers are down since the King headed West.)
Meanwhile, it's not just ticket sales getting a Lebron-inspired boost, as James' Lakers merchandise is also soaring. At the Lakers first two pre-season games at the Staples Center, the team says they sold double the amount of merchandise compared to last season.
On eBay 12,000 of James' jerseys have been sold since he signed in July. To put that in perspective, that's nearly 200 jerseys sold per day – just on that one site. His signature shoe, the Nike LeBron 15, leads eBay in sneaker sales, followed by Kyrie Irving, Damian Lillard, Steph Curry and Russell Westbrook.
"LeBron's move to Los Angeles has ignited overwhelming momentum in jersey and sneakers sales on eBay, and demonstrates how influential he truly is in moving the needle across fan gear," said Sam Bright, eBay's vice president of Soft Goods, North America.