I wanted to share this brilliant ESPN article
written by Danyel Smith that appears in the February
issue of ESPN The Magazine’s music issue.
Here’s an excerpt of it with a link to the article below!
THE SOUL OF New Games has emerged. Sports and music — specifically hip-hop — are as one.
This coalition is known already in our bones, like a new song to which everyone already knows the words. This is true particularly in basketball and football, and to a lesser degree in soccer, baseball and hockey. Hip-hop has given athletes a series of challenges — be real, do you, demand your worth. Professional athletes have seen the challenge — and, frankly, raised it.
Harbinger: Madcap Heisman winner and potential No. 1 pick Johnny “Football” Manziel is going pro — with a record 80-plus other underclassmen. Foreshadowing: It’s the business partner/manager of LeBron James (King James might as well have rapped a beat over “taking my talents to South Beach”), Maverick Carter, who will lead the Manziel charge in “off-the-field projects.” Wink: Manziel counts Toronto rapper/superstar/official Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment global ambassador Drake as adviser and friend.
And while heirloom columnists suck Lemonheads over Manziel’s attitudinal “antics” (as they are always called), let’s also note the state of O’Bannon v. National Collegiate Athletic Association, a case that survived a motion to be dismissed in federal district court, and as Inside Higher Ed observes, places “athletes … on a path to claim a share of television and other revenue that now flows almost entirely to colleges, coaches and the NCAA.” Perhaps. Perhaps not. But folks are valuing their value.
“Your old road is rapidly agin’.” — Bob Dylan, 1964’s “The Times They Are A-Changin’ ”
“I just think it’s funny how it goes.” — Drake, 2013’s “Started From the Bottom”