Kobe Bryant, Deion Sanders, and The 15 Worst Rappers In Sports (Video Included)
Why does every professional athlete think they have the right to launch a rap career?
With each passing year, it seems that there is yet another pro who emerges from his sport and takes on a side job as a hip-hop artist. With the overwhelming majority of them failing to make a favorable impression, it's incredible that the trend hasn't bucked just yet.
These 15 guys best exemplify the phenomenon described above. Enjoy.
15. Cedric Ceballos
Although he is most remembered for his blindfolded jam to win the 1992 All-Star Slam Dunk Contest, Ceballos will forever life in infamy thanks to his “Flow On” single that feature rap stars Nate Dogg and Warren G.
Perhaps the best part of the song is when Ceballos educates his listeners about his profound love for both basketball and chicken wings. A classic early 90s rap video, Ceballos’ street credit undoubtedly went up after this video hit the streets.
14. Brandon Lloyd
Before Lloyd’s outburst this season, many had wondered what the veteran wideout had been up to in all of his free time. Apparently, he was working on his freestyle career.
Appearing on MTV2 on the Sucker Free Style program, Lloyd freestyles without any help from a DJ and falls flat on his face.
Rapping about how he’s living the life of luxury, Lloyd makes multiple marijuana references and even states how he’s capable of breaking down “either a pound or a quarter”.
It’s a good thing that Lloyd re-established himself in the league this year, because this is downright ugly.
13. Jason Kidd
A 1994 rap track entitled “What the Kidd Did” cast Jason Kidd in a new light forever.
From the CD “Basketball’s Best Kept Secret”, Kidd’s endeavor into the hip-hop world was a short-lived one for good reason.
Despite “being surrounded by rumors like a Timex social”, Kidd would’ve done more for his on-court legacy had he not come out with this off-court blunder.
Luckily, nobody took the perennial all-star seriously. Well, except for maybe himself.
12. Gary Payton
Best known for his quick hands and stifling defense, “The Glove” clearly thought that his impressive play on the court would transfer over to his rapping skills as well.
Unfortunately, GP didn’t have the complex vocabulary to create the dynamic rhymes necessary to entertain his audience.
Instead, he chose to go with simple lyrics, a repetitive chorus, and a song that illustrated his obvious narcissism.
11. Deion Sanders
It must have been the money that made Deion want to launch his rap career.
A man that has never worn the same suit twice, Sanders’ me-first attitude is best exemplified in his 1993 single. Casting himself as a man concerned with only material positions, Sanders’ stunner shades, hot pink suit, and Kangol cap didn’t exactly have him looking like someone with the Primetime nickname.
Rather than making sound investments and letting his on-the-field play speak for itself, Sanders publicly boasted about his wealth while simultaneously making ears bleed nationwide.
10. Tony Parker
What’s worse than a bad rap song by an NBA superstar? A bad song that’s entirely done in the French language.
Attempting to primarily appeal to his fans back in France, Parker’s single did less for his popularity than his recent split with ex-wife Eva Longoria.
Sounding like something that would likely appear in a commercial for next season’s Jersey Shore, Parker spends the majority of his time talking about what his France looks like.
Hopefully, Parker will refrain from ever doing something like this again.
9. Chris Webber
It’s a good thing that C-Webb landed his cushy job with NBATV, otherwise he may still be rapping.
Tag-teaming with Kurupt, Webber’s “2 Much Drama” was one of the most laughable albums in recent memory. Although the veteran’s flow is certainly better than some of his counterparts on this list, his simplistic lyrics and style-less beats make his songs rather forgettable.
If he wasn’t such a great player in his NBA career, Webb would be even higher on the list. As it is, he should be fortunate that he decided to end his rap career before it really got started.
8. Roy Jones, Jr.
When Jones had to use previous success in the boxing ring to attempt and launch a rap career, most knew it was over before it began.
Perhaps the worst lyricist the hip-hop game has ever seen, Jones doesn’t even attempt to be creative. Instead, he tells boxing fans stories about his previous successes and names just about every single opponent that he’s ever faced.
While he was one of the best boxers ever in the prime of his career, he certainly doesn’t need a rap career to re-enforce that notion. In fact, it detracts from it considerably.
7. Troy Hudson
Troy Hudson stunk it up in the NBA, and his newest career hasn’t been any nicer to him.
After releasing his album, Hudson sold just 78 copies in the first week it was on the shelves. Think about that: 78 copies worldwide.
Using the moniker of “T-Hud”, his level of education is on display for the world to see. With no cadence, terrible rhymes, and absolutely no interest in his product, Hudson’s attempts to take down the rap game are putrid at best.
6. Shaquille O'Neal
Any 7’1”, 300+ pound man that refers to himself as a snake in the grass immediately loses some credibility in the rap game.
While some people might think Shaq deserves to be closer to the front of this list, any time a professional athlete goes platinum with a rap album he deserves some respect.
Unfortunately for Shaq, Kobe has proved that he can clearly do it without the big man.
Although he hasn’t released a song in quite some time, Shaqtus’ atrocious rhymes and awful analogies were prime reasons that he checks in at no. 6.
5. The Hyperizers
Remember when Kevin Durant, Mo Williams, Andre Iguodala, and Rashard Lewis did that commercial together? Well, it wasn’t just a commercial: this was a full-fledged movement.
Luckily for KD, this was before his career really began to take off and therefore wasn’t as highly publicized as it otherwise would have been. Perhaps what is most humorous about this particular group is that the group takes a retro-90s approach to the rap game and still falls flat on their face while doing so.
Both Nike and the players involved probably wish they could have this one back.
4. Ron Artest
Everyone’s favorite NBA player to clown on: Ron-Ron makes it easy to do with his career as a rapper. After the Lakers won the ’09 crown, Artest is most remembered for plugging his single “Champion”, but his endeavors in the field started long before that.
Perhaps the best illustration of his poetic genius is his tribute to Michael Jackson, just days after the pop star legend passed away.
Although his lyrics are simple and his skills haven’t exactly been honed, the booth may be just about the only place where fans can take Artest seriously these days.
And that’s exactly how he wants it.
3. Kobe Bryant
It took a while for Bryant’s delve into the rap scene to fade into the background, but it’s easy to see why this was such an embarrassment for one of the greatest to ever play the game.
Capitalizing on his popularity of the time, Kobe dropped an absolute bomb that saw many laughing rather than lauding him.
Getting a young, sexy Tyra Banks to be featured on a track was the right move, but unfortunately for Bryant he was the one that was all wrong.
The best part? His album was called K.O.B.E, which perfectly encompassed his LeBron-esque attitude at that time.
2. Gordon Hayward
While most sports fans will remember him as the lanky white kid that led Butler on a Cinderella style run in the NCAA Tournament, Hayward will never be able to escape his rap career that got underway during his days in school.
Making Vanilla Ice look like a savior to the rap game, Hayward’s awkward flow and goofy lyrics leave many laughing at the rookie wingman.
Perhaps he’ll be the one with the last laugh, as long as he stays away from the microphone.
1. LaDanian Tomlinson
Two words: Electric Slide.
Anyone who hasn’t been a witness to LT2’s infamous music video should immediately reference YouTube to find it, because it’s the best two and a half minutes one could ever invest.
Aided by flashing neon backgrounds, cheesy thematic displays, and a beat that would make every emcee drop to the knees, Tomlinson delivers an epic display of what it means to be a rapper gone bad.
It’s a good thing he’s enjoying success again this season, because his rap career certainly won’t work out once his playing days have drawn to a close.
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Ethan is a contributing consultant to Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter.