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Aron Cohen, the Mind Behind ‘Lakers All Day Everyday’

Aron Cohen is founder and leader of Lakers All Day Everyday (LADE), a fan platform that boasts over 500,000 followers, merchandise, podcast, a blog and respect from even the Lakers' players.
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March 1, 2023
Lamar Odom and Aron Cohen Photo from Instagram

When Aron Cohen was born in 1999 to Persian parents, the Los Angeles Lakers were on the verge of a 10-year run of glory, winning championships in 2000, 2001, 2002 and 2009. But their home game tickets were among the most expensive in all major American sports. For Cohen, watching a game in person was a rare treat.

Today, Cohen is founder and leader of Lakers All Day Everyday (LADE), a fan platform that boasts over 500,000 followers, merchandise, podcast, a blog and respect from even the Lakers’ players. It’s become one of the go-to sites for fans of the 10th most valuable sports franchise in the world. 

Cohen may be relatively young, but more and more Lakers fans rely on his commentary between games. 

Cohen has had a longtime love affair with his home team. The first Lakers’ championship he vividly remembers watching was in 2010 over the Boston Celtics. It was the Lakers’ second consecutive championship, and their 16th overall.

The Lakers wouldn’t make it past the conference semifinals in 2011 and 2012. They got bounced in the first round in 2013. Little did anyone know that the Lakers were about to begin their longest slump in team history. 

Cohen had just graduated from eighth grade at his Orthodox middle school, Maimonides Academy. It was during the summer before starting ninth grade at Shalhevet High School when Cohen created the LADE Instagram account. (Barely a year before Cohen founded LADE, Instagram was acquired by Facebook, so the platform was about to experience exponential growth.) 

“This was just a hobby, it was never like, ‘Oh, it’s going to become a business,’ and now it’s at over half a million followers and I’ve been running it for almost 10 years,” Cohen told the Journal. “I didn’t really expect many people to come and see what I’m doing, and then once school starts, I figured I’d forget about it,” Cohen said. 

“I was really motivated by this because I was seeing results — but it was never really about money,” Cohen said. “It was a hobby, a thrill, posting content and cool people like players and media analysts following me.”

He struggled to keep it going but persevered with his school work. Then Kobe Bryant retired in 2016. The following year, Cohen graduated from high school, with his Lakers Instagram community exceeding 100,000 followers.

But the Lakers were terrible, and had not made the playoffs since Cohen launched his Instagram account. From 2014-2017, the Lakers were either dead last in the Western Conference or second-to-last. LADE was still a hobby for Cohen, but was fast becoming a place where diehard Lakers fans could come and read and comment about their favorite team in the midst of the bad times. 

“Eventually the storm’s going to end and once that time comes, it’s going to feel great,” Cohen said. “The bad times are what make the good times sweeter.” And the times at LADE got sweeter too. 

The Lakers finished in 11th place in 2018. That offseason, LeBron James signed with the team, and Cohen started doing freelance media work for former Laker Lamar Odom. He took a media job with the USC Trojans men’s basketball team the following year. But the Lakers finished in 10th place in 2019. Still, Cohen’s optimism and enthusiasm for his online Lakers community endured. 

“There was absolutely zero hope, zero star power when I started the page,” Cohen said. “It’s so easy to be a fan of any sports team or anything when they’re winning or when they’re doing well. What makes you a real fan is the tough times where there’s literally no light at the end of the tunnel.”

Fans wanted to make and read predictions and talk trades, free agency signings, drafts, coaching hires and locker room drama. With hundreds of thousands of followers, more and more internet strangers expected Cohen to post, no matter how small or big the Lakers news was. 

And then, on January 26, 2020, Kobe Bryant was killed in a helicopter crash. Like all Laker fans, Cohen was devastated. A month later, there was a memorial event at Staples Center for Kobe. Multiple followers of LADE offered Cohen a ticket. 

“I was in such a bad place when Kobe passed,” Cohen said. At the memorial event, he mourned among NBA legends, superstar athletes and A-list celebrities. 

“I got some closure from hearing Michael Jordan and all those people speak,” Cohen said. 

Life and LADE carried on after Kobe, even as the sports world stopped due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It was the season of the NBA bubble in Florida. The Lakers would not only end their playoff drought that season; they would come out on top, winning their 17th NBA Championship. This made LADE grow even faster, which brought Cohen to a crossroads. That fall, Cohen was offered a job at ESPN.

“And at that point it was like 300,000 followers,” Cohen said. “So this is a real decision I had to make: On one hand you have ESPN. On another hand you have a chance to build something of your own and have more freedom.” 

Cohen turned down the guaranteed income from ESPN to take LADE to even greater heights. LADE has grown to include fans from all over the world, with followings in the Philippines, China, Brazil and Canada. LADE fans write in from around the world to thank him for news and updates, especially after a tough loss.”

Even though he is obviously a huge fan, Cohen does not watch all 82 regular season Laker games. He is an observant Jew and keeps Shabbat. 

Even though he is obviously a huge fan, Cohen does not watch all 82 regular season Laker games. He is an observant Jew and keeps Shabbat. So in 2019 he hired his first employee to keep the site going one day per week. 

“Who am I going to find that is, first of all, not Jewish — you’re not supposed to make another Jew work on Shabbat,” Cohen said. LADE has diversified into more than just an Instagram page. It’s also podcasts and apparel. The LADE apparel sells. The podcast is getting more followers. Cohen has to be discerning with his sponsor options. Even the NBA players are taking notice.

It was after the first Lakers road game that Cohen attended in 2021 against the Orlando Magic when Cohen realized the breadth of the community he built. As the victorious Lakers walked off the court, Cohen got a surprise he will never forget from center Anthony Davis.

“When the game ended, AD walked right to me and gave me a high five and said, ‘I appreciate the support, Aron!’ I was like, whoa, this guy knows my name!”

When asked how it feels to be so ingrained in the Lakers media and fan community scene, Cohen reflected on what he thinks makes Lakers All Day Everyday special.

“The most important thing to me still is having fun, being relatable and just enjoying life while I’m here,” Cohen said. “I’m an optimist. Whether it relates to the Lakers or not, I’m always going to be positive and look at the bright side.” 

You can follow Lakers All Day Everyday on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lakersalldayeveryday

The LADE podcast with Aron Cohen and Lamar Odom can be heard on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@LADEShow/about

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