Best Chicago athlete name-drops in music
From Michael Jordan to Jay Cutler(!), Chicago athletes have often been referenced in rap. It begs the question: What are some of the best lines about past and present Windy City players?
"The Glory" - Kanye West
"Class back in session so I upped it a grade,
Two years Dwayne Wayne became Dwyane Wade"
Tim Goldrick: First of all, underrated Ye song. In his Genius commentary, Wade said Kanye told him the lyric meant in two years he went from being cool and hip (like "A Different World's" Dwayne Wayne) to being the icon he is today. Is it wrong that this is my favorite Wade name-drop?
Jesse Menendez: It’s a great line and Ye gets extra points for coming up with a line that’s more relevant now than when he first spit it. The irony is that the song is called “The Glory” and D-Wade joined the Bulls just as his own was fading.
"One two" - The Cool Kids
"Midway city is the city where wind blows,
Fairly cold, frigerator Perry with a little bit of gold"
TG: Chuck Inglish shouting out the legendary William "The Fridge" Perry in a verse fixated on how cold he is? Sign me up for that every damn time.
JM: And I dig the nod to the ’85 Bears Championship and Super Bowl rings (“Perry with a little bit of Gold").
"Hey Ma" - Chance the Rapper
"7-7-3, oh, since Kanye was a three-old,
Down the street from D-Rose, was practicing his free throws"
TG: Plenty to choose from when it comes to D-Rose name drops, but tie goes to the Chicagoan. This gem off 10 Day makes me nostalgic for the days the Simeon star was still in MVP form. I'm now depressed.
JM: There’s another track off 10 Day that reminds me of D-Rose. It’s called, “Missing You." And now I’m depressed too.
"Out of Towner" - The Game
"I ain't shy of the Chi, Jay Cutler in cold weather,
And all I do is win, 72 and 10,
Ball like Mike, Scottie, Dennis Rodman and them"
TG: An L.A. guy paying homage to the '96 Bulls is a W. But you ever think you'd hear a song that shouts out Jay "Don't Care" Cutler?
JM: This is remarkable because it’s probably the first time Cutler has been associated with greatness. If this song wasn’t released in 2011, I would’ve been certain that the “I aint shy” line was a reference to the now infamous Jay Cutler full moon beach pic.
"Control" - Kendrick Lamar
"If Phil Jackson came back, still no coaching me,
I'm uncoachable, I'm unsociable"
TG: Phil was second to none at getting personalities to mesh -- save for in the Knicks front office -- so he probably could have coached Kendrick.
JM: The question here is if Phil would offend the TDE “Posse."
TG: Phil did have a great response on Twitter when the line first came out.
"Finale" - Young Money
"We done changed the way the game looks,
TG: Savage move by Jae Millz, but Sammy Sosa has changed up his appearance more than once...
JM: Not so fast. Maybe Millz wasn’t taking a shot at Vampire Sosa’s appearance, but was giving him props for changing minds about baseball by going deep 66 times during that historic ’98 home run season. Nah, you’re right. It was his face.
"Barry Sanders" - Wale
"Walter Payton Mercedes, sweetness in every ride"
TG: It's almost sacrilegious that the best Walter Payton shout is in a song titled after a Detroit Lions running back. However, Wale's way of bragging about his ride is kinda cool, right?
JM: Payton rushed for 16,726 yards in his career. He deserves better than this. Payton’s verse on the Super Bowl Shuffle was more clever than Wale on this forced line.
"What If" - Jadakiss
"What if hate ran through me?
And what if Portland would've drafted Jordan instead of Sam Bowie?"
TG, JM: In a song doused with hypotheticals, this one is the worst. We both don't want to envision an alternate reality where the GOAT's Jumpman statue lives in Oregon.