Drake to Host 2014 ESPY Awards Show

Kyle NewportFeatured ColumnistApril 9, 2014

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When it came time to pick the host for the 2014 ESPY Awards, Drake was an obvious choice.

Given the rapper's experience in the sports business and sports pop culture scenes, he should be well equipped to emcee the July 16 event. Drake and the ESPYs announced the news on Twitter:

This was an opportunity Drake had been pushing for, according to TMZ Sports:

Sources connected to the situation tell us ... Drake was extremely passionate about hosting the awards show—and during talks with producers, he pointed to his widely praised performance on "Saturday Night Live" as proof he could get the job done well. 

Drake's biggest sports project has been helping his hometown Toronto Raptors rebrand their franchiseFittingly, the Raptors held a "Drake Night" earlier this season to celebrate the partnership:

TORONTO, CANADA - January 11: Here are tee-shirts to celebrate Hip Hop Artist Drake on his promotional night where the Brooklyn Nets took on the Toronto Raptors during the game on January 11, 2014 at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.  NOT
Ron Turenne/Getty Images

He also took part in this year's slam dunk contest alongside Raptors swingman Terrence Ross:

Despite his NBA activity north of the border, the multi-platinum recording artist is probably best known for aligning himself with some of the biggest names in sports.

Drake was spotted in the company of LeBron James and Dwyane Wade after they led the Miami Heat to the 2013 NBA title (Warning: Video contains NSFW language):

He has also been an avid supporter of former Texas A&M star Johnny Manziel. He even took to Instagram to show his support for the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner:

More recently, he gave Johnny Football a shout-out in his track "Draft Day" (Warning: Audio contains NSFW language):

Drake also made his presence felt during March Madness, jumping on the Kentucky Wildcats bandwagon:

David J. Phillip

The ESPYs committee would be hard-pressed to find an entertainer who has been more involved in sports over the past year. With all of Drake's connections, the 2014 ESPYs should be quite a spectacle. 

[Drake, ESPYS, YouTube, YouTube, YouTube]