NBA and hip-hop culture have been intertwined for the last decade, as many rappers often name-drop NBA stars in their songs. Players also hang out with the biggest rappers in the offseason, James Harden and Lil Baby famously being friends is an excellent example of this. However, when stars reach a certain level, it's not even about whether they know rappers personally, it's just about what they represent in terms of success.
Now, while most mentions may be a point of pride for players, there are a few here and there where the star might feel like they would've been better off not being mentioned. In his latest feature, J Cole rapped alongside BIA in the song London, and he named Carmelo Anthony in a line that Melo likely wouldn't want people talking about too much.
"The same way that Melo was staring at Rih, the way that I stare at the money."
Fans immediately brought up the picture from 2014, where Carmelo Anthony can be seen staring intensely in Rihanna's direction, although there is no way to confirm that he was even looking at her in particular.
Now, NBA Twitter is known for many things, but being kind is not one of them. In this case, however, lots of people sympathized with Melo and suggested that perhaps J Cole shouldn't have brought it up in a context like this.
"J. Cole didn’t have to do Carmelo Anthony like that…"
"But that Melo pic is too iconic cause we all Melo."
"He's definitely not the only one that stares at Rihanna that way."
"He ain’t have to say it all."
"Lol Cole went tf off on that though."
"Cole definitely had to do it hope melo shot his shot that night."
"That line was insaneeeee."
"That bar had me crying."
"Cole omg man, hasn't Melo suffered enough?"
It's all in good jest and it's unlikely that Melo would be too miffed about it, but he's had better mentions in rap verses than this one throughout his career. Considering how the season has been for the Lakers though, it's certainly far from the worst thing Anthony's had to deal with this year.