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If you count on one thing from Princeton professor Dr. Cornel West, it most certainly would be the public intellectual’s propensity to be openly critical of anyone he sees fit. After his crusade against Barack Obama, and also his minor forays into Hip-Hop, West once again used his platform to hurl a few barbs in the direction of Jay-Z. West checks the successful rapper and entrepreneur over his ownership stake of the NBA franchise Brooklyn Nets, and JoyDailyTV caught the incident on tape. 

There isn’t much information on the clip, but West can be seen at a podium addressing a crowd. Speaking on the assumption that Jay-Z fans have regarding the Nets ownership situation, the Race Matters author cuts the Brooklyn bomber down to size. In a mocking fashion West says, “Jay-Z came from Marcy Projects. Look at him now, he owns the whole [arena]’ No! He owns one-fifteenth of one percent of the stadium, let’s get it right.”

West continued by addressing Russian billionaire and Nets majority owner Mikhail Prokhorov, saying, “That Russian gangster who owns 80 percent, that’s who owns it” – with the crowd in attendance applauding in approval. West tried to soften the blow saying that he respects Jay-Z and referred to him as a “lyrical genius” but ended his opening salvo by urging the megastar to “tell them the truth.”

West continued his critique by mentioning Hov’s classic 1996 debut Reasonable Doubt and jabbed playfully again by saying Jay’s claims of major stock in the Nets organization needs to be played down. It should not be discounted, however, that Jay-Z’s influence on the Brooklyn Nets goes far beyond ownership. The native New Yorker figures prominently in the marketing of the hoops squad and has even managed to get one of his famed 40/40 sports bars housed inside the Barclay Center.

Perhaps West should be a little easy on the man, don’t you think?

Peep the video of Cornel West going in on Jay-Z here:


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