LeBron James is a huge Kendrick Lamar fan. Listen to him explain why he feels a such a deep connection to K. Dot.
DAMN. is what NBA and Indiana Pacers fans said after LeBron James led his team to a comeback victory last night. It looked like the Pacers were going to get a much-needed win in their playoff series against the Cleveland Cavaliers last night, but the King thought otherwise as he willed his team to victory.
After the game, a reporter asked James if he listened to the Kendrick Lamar album yet? DUH, he previewed it on his Instagram page before it came out last Friday. But James had no problem entertaining the question.
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) April 21, 2017
“I haven’t stopped listening to it since he sent it to me,” LeBron said. “I don’t even know if that was last week or not before it came out. The guy is an unbelievable talent. His wordplay and his lyrics is unbelievable. And it hit home for me at times because I was a kid that grew up in the inner city. His story of, the notion of you either play basketball or sell drugs or that’s it. There’s no out. You become a statistic. As an African-American kid growing up in the inner city, they don’t believe that you can get out and become something. That’s why I’m able to relate to a lot of his lyrics and relate to a lot of his stories. So he’s an unbelievable artist, an unbelievable person. I’m glad he’s able to put those words on to a track and then for all of us to be able to hear it. For me, I definitely appreciate it.”
LeBron is also taking it upon himself to make sure that kids that grow up in the same environments as he and Kendrick have more options that what Biggie once rapped about. He recently announced plans to open up a school in his hometown Akron, Ohio specifically serving at-risk children entering the third and fourth grades in Fall 2018.
“We’ve learned over the years what works and what motivates them, and now we can bring all of that together in one place along with the right resources and experts,” he said. “If we get to them early enough, we can hopefully keep them on the right track to a bigger and brighter future for themselves and their families.”
In fitting irony, Kendrick has also rapped about how crucial those ages are in his verse on Thundercat‘s “Walk On By” when he says, Nine times out of ten, young niggas are nine or ten, When the line becomes thin: be a killer or fireman.