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You know the drill, most rappers want to be ball players, and most ball players want to be rappers. For each, there is generally a certain level of respect for one another that is just understood, because a lot of the time, these guys grew up in similar environments.

Take for example LeBron James. After last night’s comeback win over the Indiana Pacers, the three-time NBA champion was asked if he’s had the chance to listen to the new Kendrick Lamar record some more, obviously referring to DAMN., which LBJ previewed for his fans prior to its official release.

“I haven’t stopped listening to it since he sent it to me,” James stated.

LeBron then went on to discuss why he is able to relate to Kendrick’s music, saying “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,” he continued. “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.”

James is not only a well-documented fan of KDot, but hip-hop in general. He has recently become a go-to music critic for projects that us normal people have yet to get our hands on, as he can often be seen previewing unreleased material on social media.

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