On “Immortal”, the second track of the new J. Cole album 4 Your Eyez Only, the North Carolina-born rapper offers some insights about basketball.
“I know nobody meant to live forever anyway. And so I hustle like my n***** in Virgini-A. They tellin’ hittas sell dope, rap or they go to NBA, in that order.”
Cole criticizes this way of thinking — adding that it’s too limiting for people to look at those avenues as the only option.
But Cole is obviously a huge sports fan and even caught an alley-oop from Kevin Hart at the 2012 Celebrity All-Star game.
Earlier this week, Cole was at a North Carolina State basketball game with rap star Wale.
In the song “Thank Me Now” by Drake, he has a stanza that explains the motif of rappers shouting out athletes.
“Damn, I swear sports and music are so synonymous because we want to be them and they want to be us.”
Meanwhile, this is not the first time that Cole has references basketball in his lyrics.
Cole rapped that he “balls like Kobe in the fall” on “Cole World” and had another one on the same album with a line about LeBron James.
“But, you will never play me like LeBron vs. Jordan,
Twenty years, wonder who they gone say was more important”
On the song “Rise and Shine” (which was featured on the NBA 2K16 soundtrack) he had a great shout out to the NBA as well.
He said he never that “hooped” well enough to be on the Lakers — but his words have him “balling like Jordan.”
Music and sports can collide in beautiful ways sometimes. Just ask rapper Dame D.O.L.L.A. slash Portland Trailblazers star Damian Lillard.