Ballers and Brawlers On Wax: Shaq Fu, Kobe, A.I., Neon Deion, Ron Artest, Roy Jones Jr and More!

Sports and Hip-Hop go hand in hand. Ball players who listen to rap and dress like rappers come a dime a dozen in the NBA and NFL. Then you’ve got all the rappers who regularly go courtside to watch the games. Guys like Jay-Z and Nelly take it one step farther and even own parts of teams.But for as much as the two sides have in common, the more they don’t have in common. How many rappers can you name that actually have a jump shot? I can think of three guys, and their games are average at best. Every year, you hear about another athlete who is either starting a record label or putting out an album. The number of those guys who succeed are about as high as Shaq’s three-point percentage, but it doesn’t stop them from trying. In celebration of Black Music Month, AllHipHop takes a look at some of the athletes that have attempted to cross over.Shaquille O’Neal When Shaq got drafted in the NBA in 1992, he was one of the biggest things in sports. Not just because of his 7-1, 300 pound frame, but also with his bigger than life personality. He had all those endorsement deals, starred in movies and even layed down a little track. Who can forget his rap debut on the Arsenio Hall Show when he rapped with the Fu-Schnickens, “Can we rock? What’s up doc…can we rock?” His 1993 debut album Shaq Diesel went platinum, but the rest of his four albums tanked. A lot of people didn’t take him seriously as an artist, probably because there is not much street cred when you are starring in movies like Kazaam. But let’s give the Big Cactus some props, he can flow a little. Throughout the years he has collaborated with Michael Jackson, Warren G, Black Thought, Common, Fat Joe and Busta Rhymes. Fu-Schnickens and Shaq Fu “What’s Up Doc”

“(I Know I Got) Skillz”

“You Can’t Stop The Reign”

Tony Parker Let’s not hate. Tony Parker has been a winner in life. He’s got three NBA titles and he’s married to the beautiful Eva Longoria – but TP needs to quit while he is ahead. His rapping ability is not bad, it’s down right terrible. He raps in French, so even though I can’t translate the lyrics, you can tell its garbage. The video, the beats and everything else, look and sound like something they would play on Nickelodeon. In fairness, his single “Clip Balance Toi” got over two million hits on YouTube. Too bad the majority of those people didn’t watch the clip to get their groove on but rather get a good laugh out of it. “Clip Balance Toi”

Kobe Bryant A lot of people don’t know this, but Kobe Bryant actually made a rap album. In 2000, the reigning MVP recorded an album called Visions. Unfortunately for him, nobody saw those visions or heard it since Columbia refused to release his album. I haven’t heard any tracks off that album, but I did hear his guest spot on Brian McKnight’s 1998 single “Hold Me.” Kobe raps, “Your love’s a sword, slicing gently through my body, burnt so sweet, blood boils when you speak, makes me week, but I refuse to weep, but when I sleep, I feel tears trickling down my check.” ‘Nuff said! Live performance of “K.O.B.E.” f/ Tyra Banks

Deion Sanders In the early ‘90s, it was all about Prime Time baby! Nobody could touch Deion Sanders on the football field or baseball diamond. Back then, Deion had that Kanye West ego but without the rapping skills. In 1995, Neon Deion thought it was a good idea to release a rap single and video “Must Be The Money.” I’m guaranteeing you, the video will have you falling out. On top of being a horrible song, Prime Time is shamelessly dancing around limos and swimming pools in a hot pink suit. This video reminds me a lot of Willy Beamon’s (Jamie Foxx) video in Any Given Sunday. And here’s another gem: MC Hammer f/ Neon Deion “Straight To My Feet”

Pacman Jones If any athlete needs to be rapping, it probably should be Pacman Jones. The newly acquired Dallas Cowboy taught mainstream America what making it rain means. Pacman already has street cred, now he just needs a couple of hits. While he was suspended in 2007 for his Vegas Vacation escapade, he started his label National Street League Records. The first single he released was a track called “Let It Shine” with his group the Posterboyz. If he can let it shine half as well as he can make it rain then he’s a sure shot one hit wonder. Posterboyz “Let It Shine” (fan video… kind of)

Allen Iverson Allen Iverson’s rap career ended before it really started. It wasn’t that he was a bad rapper, but rather, his lyrics were a little too controversial for an NBA superstar. When he released “40 Bars” in 2000, he opened up a PR nightmare for the NBA and all his sponsors. In the song, AI made a homophobic reference, talked about guns, murder and prison. Not exactly the combination of topics that David Stern wants to hear. But despite the backlash from the NBA and media, Iverson’s mainstream popularity never wavered. “40 Bars” (fan video)

A.I. and Jadakiss Reebok commercial

Floyd Mayweather When you’re 39-0 and the baddest man in boxing, you have the green light to do as you please. Floyd Mayweather, Jr. wants to make a rap album, who is going to tell him he can’t? In his song “Yep” Mayweather raps about getting money, burying the bar, popping tags, and driving nice cars. Not the most original song, but like I said, who’s going to tell him he can’t? “Yep”

Ron Artest Ron Artest hails from the same Queensbridge, NY neighborhood as Nas, but that is about the only thing in common that Artest has with the legendary MC. While he was suspended for the infamous brawl in Detroit, Artest was working on his album. Though he gave a good effort, the fact remains he just can’t rap. Not even a guest spot by Mike Jones can save his song “Get Lo.” “Get Lo” f/ Mike Jones

Roy Jones, Jr. There was a time when Roy Jones Jr. was the most dominant boxer on the planet. With little competition in the ring, Jones was obviously bored. He played pro basketball for a minor league team, and he took up rapping and started his Body Head Entertainment label. While I do got to admit he kind of sounds like Juvenile on the mike, his beats and rhymes are average at best. To his credit, he has worked with some decent names like Bun B, Juvenile, Petey Pablo and ‘Lil Flip. “Can’t Be Touched”

“Y’all Must Have Forgot”

Troy Hudson NBAer Troy Hudson has had a rough year. After being released by Warriors after playing just nine games, T-Hud’s rap album Undrafted didn’t exactly fly off the shelves. His single “Tru Luv” which featured Ray-J got over 94,000 hits on YouTube – but obviously none of those 94,000 were paying customers. T-Hud and TQ performing live “How I Get By”

“True Love” f/ Ray J (fan video)

Chris Webber Chris Webber’s had his share of problems throughout his career, and rapping was one of them. Give him some credit for hooking it up on the visual side of things for his aptly titled 1999 album 2 Much Drama, but it’s a good thing he dropped the ball on the rap career. C-Webb, Kurupt, a gang of cameos and lots of dancing “Gangsta Gangsta (How U Do It)”

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