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View Full Version : Papa John's is offically dead in Cleveland (Cavs/Wiz)



Basketball Fan
05-04-2008, 11:47 AM
Shame this series is over this was just getting good...

http://www.sogoodblog.com/2008/05/03/papa-johns-pizza-hates-the-state-of-ohio/



Does Papa Johnís Pizza Hate the State of Ohio?
May 3rd, 2008 ∑ 24 Comments
Update 5/4. 1:30 AM: The snowball effect continues. Someone has started a Facebook group titled ďCavs fans that will never eat Papa Johns ever againĒ

Update 5/4, 12:15 AM: Earlier today the Cleveland Plain Dealer interviewed me for a story about these shirts. Their story has now been posted on the Plain Dealer website. It notes, among other things, that the decision to give out these shirts was NOT authorized by the corporate office.

Update 5/3, 11:30 PM: Less than 24 hours after So Good broke the story, someone has put up a website called Boycott Papa Johnís.



Update 5/3, 8:00 PM: Deadspin, FanIQ, Cold Mud, AOLís Fanhouse and more than a dozen other online communities have picked up the story.

Update 5/3, 3:15 PM: This story is starting to spread like wildfire. Cavs fans online are already suggesting a boycott HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE. In the comments, a delivery driver for Papa Johnís writes:

ďWe received two faxes talking about the shirt,followed by threats to boycott.Ē

A General Manager for a Northeast Ohio Papa Johnís adds:

ďwe have received calls of people wanting to boycott us, but hopefully something will come out ASAP from Corporate as a nationwide apology.Ē

Original Post 5/3 2:00 AM:

Why would Papa Johnís make a marketing decision that has the potential to anger hundreds of thousands of Ohio customers?

Earlier tonight I attended the Washington Wizards and Cleveland Cavaliers playoff game 6 at the Verizon Center in DC. Over the course of my night, one thing really surprised me. A few fans around the arena had shirts mocking Lebron James. The shirts had the number 23 on them, with the word ďCrybabyĒ across the back. This kind of taunting is common at NBA arenas. But what was most shocking was that the shirts featured the Papa Johnís logo, and appeared to be sponsored by, and paid for by, Papa Johnís Pizza.



Lebron James is one of, if not THE most popular player in the NBA. Not only that, he is beloved in the state of Ohio. I was perplexed why Papa Johnís Pizza would put their name on a t-shirt that so openly taunted such a well-liked athlete. The decision to sponsor these shirts seems incredibly ill advised.

The only rational would be if Papa Johnís has a lot of franchises in Washington, DC, but none in the state of Ohio. However, as a national chain, I was skeptical that they didnít have a presence in the state. Sure enough, a quick check on the Papa Johnís website, using their restaurant locater, shows that there are TEN different Papa Johnís pizza outlets just within 12 miles of the Cleveland Cavaliers arena.

So the question now is, why did Papa Johnís decide to sponsor a promotion that will surely **** off a ton of Cavaliers fans and Ohio residents? Will Papa Johnís start to lose business because angry residents donít appreciate them openly mocking the most popular athlete in the state of Ohio? Will this end up hurting Papa Johnís profits, or damage their company name? Will it lead to a boycott of Papa Johnís by Cleveland Cavaliers fans?

Naptown_Seth
05-04-2008, 11:53 AM
That's the sound of a marketing executive getting fired.

idioteque
05-04-2008, 11:54 AM
Cleveland fans will be whipping these shirts out themselves in a couple of years when LeBron bolts to NY. :devil:

AesopRockOn
05-04-2008, 11:57 AM
I think you mean BK.

avoidingtheclowns
05-04-2008, 12:35 PM
oh, not all of cleveland. i doubt indians fans would mind...

http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/upload/news/sports_photo02.jpg

idioteque
05-04-2008, 12:56 PM
oh, not all of cleveland. i doubt indians fans would mind...

http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/upload/news/sports_photo02.jpg

Someone needed to lob a tomato at LeBron pretty badly in that picture. Or, better yet, a warm, half full beer (actually that would be better if he was laying down on the dugout).

I've never understood LeBron's fascination with the Yankees. He didn't grow up there, as far as I know he never lived there, he just likes them either because they have a cool logo or because they win a lot.

Kstat
05-04-2008, 12:59 PM
He's also a big cowboys fan and grew up a bulls fan.

He's the kind of guy that roots for the federal government in an income tax suit.*




*borrowed line

Isaac
05-04-2008, 01:03 PM
Someone needed to lob a tomato at LeBron pretty badly in that picture. Or, better yet, a warm, half full beer (actually that would be better if he was laying down on the dugout).

I've never understood LeBron's fascination with the Yankees. He didn't grow up there, as far as I know he never lived there, he just likes them either because they have a cool logo or because they win a lot.

That's silly. I didn't grow up in Indianapolis and I'm a die-hard Pacer and Colt fan. He said he's been a Yankee fan since he was a kid, sure those were probably the reasons when he first started rooting for him, but I like that he stuck with his team. Would you rather have him jump off the Yankee bandwagon because they haven't won a world series in 8 years?

idioteque
05-04-2008, 02:14 PM
That's silly. I didn't grow up in Indianapolis and I'm a die-hard Pacer and Colt fan. He said he's been a Yankee fan since he was a kid, sure those were probably the reasons when he first started rooting for him, but I like that he stuck with his team. Would you rather have him jump off the Yankee bandwagon because they haven't won a world series in 8 years?

Have you ever lived in Indiana? I didn't grow up in DC but the Nationals came here the same year I did, and I've been a fan ever since.

I just don't understand how a fan with no real connection to the city the team plays in can ever root for that team. Maybe it's different for some other people and I respect that. If you live in Chicago and root for the Pacers and the Colts, two remarkably average franchises that's one thing. However, if you live in Cleveland and root for the Yankees and the Cowboys, that smells of just rooting for two franchises that win/won all the time.

And to say that anyone could ever jump off of the Yankees bandwagon is ridiculous. They will always be a winning team no matter what. It's only a matter of time before they win another pennant.

Roaming Gnome
05-04-2008, 02:23 PM
That's silly. I didn't grow up in Indianapolis and I'm a die-hard Pacer and Colt fan. He said he's been a Yankee fan since he was a kid, sure those were probably the reasons when he first started rooting for him, but I like that he stuck with his team. Would you rather have him jump off the Yankee bandwagon because they haven't won a world series in 8 years?

No, but if __ any high profile Colts player__was a Detroit Pistons fan and came into the Fieldhouse wearing Piston's gear.... I'd probably lose a lot of respect for him because I'd look at it as pissing on the hometown FANS. It wouldn't be because he was a Piston's fan, I could care less. It's just sitting in the hometown arena with a lot of the same fans that root for you on Sunday, but you are rooting against them and their team on Friday.

Just my thoughts....anyway.

Basketball Fan
05-04-2008, 02:37 PM
No, but if __ any high profile Colts player__was a Detroit Pistons fan and came into the Fieldhouse wearing Piston's gear.... I'd probably lose a lot of respect for him because I'd look at it as pissing on the hometown FANS. It wouldn't be because he was a Piston's fan, I could care less. It's just sitting in the hometown arena with a lot of the same fans that root for you on Sunday, but you are rooting against them and their team on Friday.

Just my thoughts....anyway.




Well Dungy is a Pistons fan but he's from Michigan so it makes sense but he does root for the Pacers too..


Putting that aside this does remind me of when Tom Brady wore a Yankees cap and it caused a bit of an uproar in Boston.

31andonly
05-04-2008, 02:43 PM
Have you ever lived in Indiana? I didn't grow up in DC but the Nationals came here the same year I did, and I've been a fan ever since.

I just don't understand how a fan with no real connection to the city the team plays in can ever root for that team. Maybe it's different for some other people and I respect that. If you live in Chicago and root for the Pacers and the Colts, two remarkably average franchises that's one thing. However, if you live in Cleveland and root for the Yankees and the Cowboys, that smells of just rooting for two franchises that win/won all the time.

And to say that anyone could ever jump off of the Yankees bandwagon is ridiculous. They will always be a winning team no matter what. It's only a matter of time before they win another pennant.

I also have never lived in Indiana and I've never been there..however, I'm a Pacers-Fan since I'm 13 years old.

You don't have to live somewhere to be a fan!

bellisimo
05-04-2008, 03:19 PM
I also have never lived in Indiana and I've never been there..however, I'm a Pacers-Fan since I'm 13 years old.

You don't have to live somewhere to be a fan!

QFT...sometimes you have to live where they are the rivals of the teams you should be rooting for but hate for various reasons...living in NY/NJ area...the Pacers were the perfect team for me to follow and become a fan of cause I despised the Knicks and their fans :devil:

JayRedd
05-04-2008, 03:32 PM
Have you ever lived in Indiana? I didn't grow up in DC but the Nationals came here the same year I did, and I've been a fan ever since.

I just don't understand how a fan with no real connection to the city the team plays in can ever root for that team. Maybe it's different for some other people and I respect that. If you live in Chicago and root for the Pacers and the Colts, two remarkably average franchises that's one thing. However, if you live in Cleveland and root for the Yankees and the Cowboys, that smells of just rooting for two franchises that win/won all the time.

You really don't need a rational for becoming a fan when you're under 10 years old. It's pretty expected and acceptable for a 7-year-old LeBron to pick the Yanks, Cowboys and Bulls.

If you're 15 and you do the same thing, then you're a douchebag. But at 7, cmon, anything goes. You just then have to stick with that 7-year-old decision your whole life is all.

I grew up in Maine, so we had no real team. Generally, most people just root for all the Boston teams. But I'm sort of a contrarian and didn't like openly rooting for Bird and the Celtics (even though I liked them), specifically cause they were so successful and all my friends and family liked them. So after flirting with Barkley's Sixers a little and never really liking them full heartedly, I started leaning to the Rifleman and Indy. Then came Reggie and it was set in stone.

SycamoreKen
05-04-2008, 03:38 PM
Back to the origional subject, is ot possible there was a deal for PJ's to sponser shirts but did not approve what was on them?

JayRedd
05-04-2008, 03:42 PM
Here's the Plain Dealer story on it.

http://www.cleveland.com/cavs/plaindealer/index.ssf?/base/sports/120990422783100.xml&coll=2

by Amanda Garrett
Ohio Plain Dealer



Lori Carabello, director of Cleveland operations for Papa John's, said the corporate office didn't authorize the T-shirts.

She suspects a Papa John's franchise in the D.C. area made them and passed them out. "We're as stunned as everybody else who was watching the game," she said.

idioteque
05-04-2008, 04:49 PM
You really don't need a rational for becoming a fan when you're under 10 years old. It's pretty expected and acceptable for a 7-year-old LeBron to pick the Yanks, Cowboys and Bulls.

If you're 15 and you do the same thing, then you're a douchebag. But at 7, cmon, anything goes. You just then have to stick with that 7-year-old decision your whole life is all.



I'll concede that. Any seven year old who is allowed to make such picks however, well IMHO it reeks of very stinky parenting. My Dad steered me clear of the Yankees and Cowboys very early on.

grace
05-04-2008, 06:02 PM
Well Dungy is a Pistons fan but he's from Michigan so it makes sense but he does root for the Pacers too..

But he's smart enough not to wear Pistons gear to Conseco.

Basketball Fan
05-04-2008, 07:59 PM
Update: PJ's is doing damage control

http://blog.cleveland.com/metro/2008/05/papa_johns_issues_apology_offe.html


Papa John's issues apology, pizza deal
Posted by Laura Johnston May 04, 2008 18:30PM
Categories: Breaking News
Looks like Papa John's is eating humble pie.

Or rather, serving it up to Clevelanders - for a whopping 23 cents.

(Sorry about the cheesy pun. Oops, just did it again.)

The pizza chain issued an apology Sunday for the No. 23 T-shirts emblazoned with the word "Crybaby" and the Papa John's logo, which Washington Wizards fans flaunted during Friday's playoff game in Washington DC. To show the chain's sincerity, its more than 40 area stores on Thursday will sell customers a large one-topping pie for 23 cents.

The company will donate those 23 cents from every pizza, plus $10,000, to the Cavaliers Youth Fund.

"At Papa John's, we're huge fans of Cleveland, the Cavs and LeBron James," said the company statement. "Everyone wins, and we wish the same for the Cavs and LeBron through the playoffs."

The shirts stemmed from No. 23, LeBron James', complaints about hard fouls he thought were intended to injure. Wizards Center Brendan Haywood labeled him a crybaby.

Too bad the Cavs took Game 6 105-88. And we won 23-cent pizza.

Guess that makes it no harm, no foul.

Big Smooth
05-04-2008, 09:55 PM
23 cent pizzas? Holy cow! :D

Anthem
05-04-2008, 10:31 PM
23 cent pizzas? Holy cow! :D

I'm in Cincinnati... I wonder what the locations are.

Roaming Gnome
05-04-2008, 11:35 PM
Funny, when I mentioned that if I were a hard core Cavs fan to my wife, i'd tell Papa that he could go toss his .23cent pizza's in the lake....she just asked if I was nuts to turn down .23 cent Pizza. I told her that was not enough if they did this to Reggie back in the day. I would want an explination not just a "we are all winners" cop out.

Basketball Fan
05-05-2008, 12:31 AM
I'm in Cincinnati... I wonder what the locations are.



I think it just extends to the greater Northeast area of Ohio

rexnom
05-05-2008, 12:35 AM
I'm in Cincinnati... I wonder what the locations are.
Anthem, you should call and DEMAND a 23 cent pizza. Claim ur a crazy Cavs/LeBron fan and you dont have another sports team and such.

JayRedd
05-05-2008, 01:41 AM
And you have a gun.

Shade
05-05-2008, 01:42 AM
See, this is what Papa John's gets for hiring Dubya.

Shade
05-05-2008, 01:44 AM
And you have a gun.

And you play for the Bengals.

rexnom
05-05-2008, 02:09 AM
And you have a gun.
A big gun. Tell them that you want a 23 cent pizza or ur coming for Papa Jay himself.

Karmakillaz
05-05-2008, 08:37 AM
I am a driver for Papa john's, here is a tip to get a kinda free pizza.

We automatically mail out post cards with a free 2 topping pizza coupon to people whos orders are delivered late. So call up Papa J's, tell them you have a card for a free 2 topping pizza and simply give the driver a nice tip (like 4 or 5 bucks) and 99% of the time we will not even ask for the coupon.

BillS
05-05-2008, 10:09 AM
Some people need to get a sense of humor.

If we were playing the Knicks and someone had shirts about Reggie from a chain with a presence in NY, I don't think I'd go off on the chain.

I'd probably think it was kind of funny and wish I had a similar shirt for someone on the other team.

See, now THERE would be a promotion. Some shirt picking on a member of each of the playoff teams, handed out in the playoff cities prior to each round.

Shade
05-05-2008, 11:13 AM
Some people need to get a sense of humor.

If we were playing the Knicks and someone had shirts about Reggie from a chain with a presence in NY, I don't think I'd go off on the chain.

I'd probably think it was kind of funny and wish I had a similar shirt for someone on the other team.

See, now THERE would be a promotion. Some shirt picking on a member of each of the playoff teams, handed out in the playoff cities prior to each round.

The difference is that Papa John's is a national chain. If it were just a local business, I think the impact would be far less significant.

grace
05-05-2008, 04:31 PM
I don't think that a lack of a sense of humor is the problem. The problem is when people are trying to decide which place to get pizza from. "You wanna get Pizza Hut or Papa John's?" Some are going to say "Well, Papa John's had those stupid t-shirts. Let's get Pizza Hut."

BillS
05-05-2008, 05:00 PM
I don't think that a lack of a sense of humor is the problem. The problem is when people are trying to decide which place to get pizza from. "You wanna get Pizza Hut or Papa John's?" Some are going to say "Well, Papa John's had those stupid t-shirts. Let's get Pizza Hut."

Ahh, but if there was also a Cleveland-produced T-shirt about, say, Arenas, wouldn't that mitigate it some?

Ahh, well, marketing can't afford to make anyone mad no matter how funny it would be.

Anthem
05-05-2008, 07:21 PM
The difference is that Papa John's is a national chain. If it were just a local business, I think the impact would be far less significant.
But the shirts weren't put out by the national chain. They were put out by a local store.

count55
05-05-2008, 07:35 PM
I don't think that a lack of a sense of humor is the problem. The problem is when people are trying to decide which place to get pizza from. "You wanna get Pizza Hut or Papa John's?" Some are going to say "Well, Papa John's had those stupid t-shirts. Let's get Pizza Hut."

Yes, but then they'll realize that Pizza Hut tastes like feet, and order Papa John's.

grace
05-05-2008, 09:18 PM
Yes, but then they'll realize that Pizza Hut tastes like feet, and order Papa John's.


Or they'll just DiGiorno.

carpediem024
05-05-2008, 10:17 PM
Now 23 cents for pizza? :D

Shade
05-05-2008, 10:20 PM
But the shirts weren't put out by the national chain. They were put out by a local store.

It doesn't matter. Papa John's is a nationally-recognized name with stores all over the country. Why do you think the corporate office is doing damage control right now?

Guilty by association.

grace
05-05-2008, 10:59 PM
It doesn't matter. Papa John's is a nationally-recognized name with stores all over the country. Why do you think the corporate office is doing damage control right now?

Guilty by association.

It's kind of like when there's a shooting outside a bar you own. It reflects badly on you the owner. Just ask Marvin Harrison.