Nearly 20 years ago, Allen Iverson made one of the great Rap-and-basketball spots for his shoe, The Answer. Recruiting Jadakiss, the then-Philadelphia 76er showed off his handle while The LOX MC rapped to cameras (also embedded below). It was a one-minute ad that only created more mystique to the popular Reebok shoes from the exciting, Hip-Hop-savvy NBA superstar.
In 2020, Damian Lillard is just that. A more prolific rapper than Iverson, the Portland Trailblazer is also hopeful of getting a championship ring (just as A.I. was around 2001). For his Adidas-backed Dame 6 sneaker, he taps Pusha-T for another one-minute spot, with bouncing ball-inspired production (courtesy of Pharrell Williams), and hard driving-bars. Pusha Ton also appears in the video, alongside Dame D.O.L.L.A. This comes ahead of all-star weekend.
“My hands can’t be trusted / Cross you up, so disgusted,” raps King Push. “See, I got a thousand cousins / I was focused while y’all wasn’t / You played the sport, I played the porch, I served it out the oven / While y’all was out there clubbin’ / I ran su*cides in the dungeon.” Dame adds a bridge to the bars, which make no bones about Pusha-T’s past in the streets.
There’s another verse afterward. In the video, Push raps at a hyper-focused Dame. “This Oakland kid is a soldier / They said it’s no one that’s colder / They said his heart is like boulder / ‘Cause he’ll hit the game-winner, bye-bye, it was nice to know ya.” Previously, Pusha-T has cashed in with jingles. After a heavy hand in an ongoing McDonald’s campaign, he staked a more significant claim with Arby’s.
Notably, it was Pusha-T who spilled the beans on Drake’s Adidas rollout in 2018.
#BonusBeat: Allen Iverson and Jadakiss’ ad: