Lakers Return Millions Meant For Small Businesses!!

By on April 28, 2020
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 27: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers looks on against the New Orleans Pelicans during the first half at Staples Center on February 27, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images)

Among the small businesses that recently received COVID-19 relief loans from the federal government was your favorite mom ‘n pop basketball team, the Los Angeles Lakers.

ESPN reports that the LeBron James-led franchise, which is among the NBA’s most profitable, applied for relief through the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program, and was granted a $4.9 million loan.

But after reports that large entities like Ruth’s Chris Steak House and Shake Shack were securing aid from the program’s initial $349 billion pool–while hundreds of thousands of smaller businesses were shut out–the Lakers said they returned the money. (Under public pressure, Ruth’s Chris and Shake Shack also returned their loans.)

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