Many rappers love to use sports to create punch lines and referencing the NBA is probably at the top of that list. In order to be referenced in a rap song, it seems that you either have to be really bad, really ugly, or really good.
There have been many Kobe Bryant rap references that make all Laker fans rewind the track as soon as we hear his name. Most references are about his greatness, his beef with Shaq, and the Denver incident (sadly).
Here are my top 5 Kobe references in rap music. There are many more, so please feel free to share with us here at Lakerholicz if you have a favorite Kobe rap punch line.
5. “Who da neighbors? Kobe Bryant from the Lakers, now that’s paper!”
Juicy J stated this line in the Wiz Khalifa song, “Errday.” Now it’s obviously not an amazing metaphor or punch line that is going to blow your socks off by any stretch of the imagination, but it did create a huge buzz, especially on the Internet. Many people found this line extremely quotable and fun to recite.
I don’t know if the line is true, but it is a great way to prove how successful he is. Being neighbors with the great Kobe Bryant can only mean that you’ve won at this game called life. Whether it’s true or not, it’s a fun way to prove how much money you have. Kind of like Nicki Minaj, who recently rapped that she was voting for Mitt Romney, even though she isn’t even registered to vote.
4. “And when it comes down to this recording, I must be Lebron James if he’s Jordan. No, I won rings for my performance. I’m more of a Kobe Bryant of an artist.”
This line was rapped by Lil Wayne, who has openly been a huge Laker fan for a very long time. It was rapped over Jay Z’s “Show Me What You Got” beat at a heated time between the two rappers.
Jay Z stated in the original song that he was “the Mike Jordan of recording” and Lil Wayne decided to respond to that line. It seems as if he wanted to compare himself to Lebron at first, but realized he’d rather state that he’s a multiple time champion at what he does. Great stuff. (More from Lil Wayne to come).
3. “Trying to get that Kobe number, one over Jordan.”
Kanye West has probably referenced Kobe Bryant the most out of any rapper. It’s no secret that he is a huge Laker fan and now we are seeing him sit front row at games with his new girlfriend, Kim Kardashian. It seems as if the Kardashians just can’t stay out of Staples Center, huh?
Anyway, the punch line was stated in the song, “Swagga Like Us.” It is a beautiful play on words referencing when Kobe decided to change his number from 8 to 24. Many people believed that he did this so that his number could be one higher than Jordan, even though it was the number he wore in high school before switching to 33. He obviously couldn’t have 33 because of the great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar so he chose 24.
Everyone knows Kobe measures his own greatness to that of Michael Jordan so the jersey number added fuel to the fire. Kanye must also want to be better than the great rappers who came before him.
2. “Interscope feeling like Charlotte when they traded Kobe you know? But I let it go, Rozay finna re-up. He got himself a Kobe and they stuck with Vlade Divac.”
These lines were rapped by Wale on the “Barry Sanders” track. When I first heard it, I immediately started the track over again and said to myself, “WOW!” This is probably the most thought provoking Kobe punch line of them all.
Wale is referncing the 1996 NBA draft when the Charlotte Hornets drafted Kobe with the 13th pick, but traded him to the Lakers for Vlade Divac. Well, Kobe went on to win 5 championships, achieve numerous awards, break many records, and become one of the greatest basketball players of all time. Good job Charlotte.
Wale is comparing that huge mistake by Charlotte to Interscope’s decision to drop him from their Label. Now Rick Ross has this great up and coming rapper, while Interscope is stuck with “Divacs” of the rap game. I guess Rick Ross can be compared to Jerry West?
1. “Kobe Bryant” by Lil Wayne
This entire song is at the top of the list of Kobe Bryant rap references. With sound bites from guys like Stephen A praising Kobe’s greatness, this song is sure to get every Laker fan pumped up. It also features quotes from other players, including LeBron James, stating that Kobe is the best in the game.
Keep in mind that this song was written while Kobe was on his way to his fourth championship. There was obviously much more to come from Bryant. Maybe Lil Wayne should do a remake with some updated numbers.
Best line of the song, “going for his fourth ring like it was his first.” That line surely defines the Black Mamba. Enjoy the song here.