For his signature style of play, determination and desire to dominate, NBA Hall of Famer Allen Iverson was worth his weight in platinum on and off the basketball court. Not only did his trademark crossover inspire a generation of young ballers, but the Philadelphia 76ers icon had a natural fashion sense that resonated within the Black community and specifically hip-hop.
When A.I. wasn’t attempting to jumpstart his own rap career, he clearly was breathing life into emcees like The Game, who released a tribute Friday, Nov. 27, 2020, appropriately dubbed “A.I. With The Braids,” featuring Lil Wayne. The nostalgic track reminisces on all the good things about Iverson’s game while peering into the notorious lifestyle that made him a hoops legend.
The melodic Mike Zombie-produced track follows Game’s critically acclaimed album, Born To Rap, which was released almost one year to the day in 2019.
“A.I. with the braids is almost single-handedly responsible for most if not all trends you see in hip-hop and professional sports these days,” The Game said in an official statement. “Every kid including myself wanted to be Allen Iverson, from the baggy jerseys with the diamond chains to the designs in his braids and [his] whole swagger. Girls were in love with him, and he was pound for pound the best player in the NBA. A.I. went from being my idol as a kid to being my brother in real life, so it’s only right I pay homage.”
The Compton rapper added, “He didn’t care what anyone in the world thought of his style, he just did him. … And back then, we had a little ‘A.I. with the braids’ in all of us.”
Listen to the collab after the jump.