Before The Fame: Ball Players & Their Lifelong Friendships with Rappers

Every athlete wants to be a rapper and every rapper wants to be an athlete.

Photo Removed
Complex Original

Blank pixel used during image takedowns

Photo Removed

Rappers have been referencing sports in their lyrics since Kurtis Blow dropped "Basketball"way back in 1984 and it's a subject we've. covered. extensively. over the years.  With rap sometimes being as competitive as some sports, both athletes and rappers can relate to each other more than one would think. Every rapper wanted to be a pro athlete growing up, and every ball player wants to be a rapper (some of have even made their dreams happen).

This year, Sheck Wes' "Mo Bamba," named after, you guessed it, Orlando Magic big man Mo Bamba made concerts and parties a life or death situation. Jay-Z has played a big brother role in LeBron's life since James came into the NBA. And we bet you didn't know Dave East goes way back with Kevin Durant and Michael Beasley when they played AAU ball together.

In the video above, we take a look at some long lasting relationships between some of your favorite rappers and favorite athletes. Check it out.

Latest in Sports