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Before LeBron James announced that he was "taking his talents to South Beach", was this common phrase, or did he create it? I seem to read or hear that phrase used very commonly now but I can't recall ever seeing it before.

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    Slightly tangential, but worth mentioning, imo: Taking Your Talent to the Web (New Riders, 2001), a truly excellent book by Jeffrey Zeldman, is now freely downloadable. – Dori Jun 2 '11 at 6:19
  • @Dori - Not at all tangential, as it predates LeBron saying it by quite a few years. – T.E.D. Sep 12 '11 at 14:11
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I can find it in Agatha Christie's Secret Adversary (1922) as one example before LeBron. There are others on Google Books.

When I was a boy I heard a famous murder trial. I was deeply impressed by the power and eloquence of the counsel for the defence. For the first time I entertained the idea of taking my talents to that particular market

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I wouldn't even call that a specific coinage; I think it's just an instantiation of a general "taking my X to Y" phrase that's long established.

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