Before being traded to the San Antonio Spurs in the summer of 2018, Toronto Raptors icon DeMar DeRozan spent the first nine seasons of his NBA career and helped establish the team into a perennial playoff contender in the Eastern Conference.
He was a four-time All-Star with the Raptors and was instrumental in helping the team reach the playoffs for five straight years starting in 2014. Even though he doesn’t play in Toronto anymore, he remains a beloved athlete in the city, which was apparent to rapper Drake, who is also the Raptors’ global ambassador and a fixture in the team’s games.
So when the Canadian rapper dropped new music in the form of the EP “Scary Hours II,” he included a mention to DeRozan in “Lemon Pepper Freestyle,” the third song in the project which features a guest verse from rapper Rick Ross.
“And my city love me like DeMar DeRozan” – Drake on Lemon Pepper Freestyle pic.twitter.com/XnksEV9YMN
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) March 5, 2021
In the song’s second verse, Drake mentions that his city loves him like DeMar DeRozan, which references the admiration that Toronto has for the 31-year-old guard.
But more than the reference to one of his songs, DeRozan also has a longstanding friendship with Drake that has continued even after his departure. When he was traded to the Spurs in 2018 for Kawhi Leonard, DeRozan revealed that he went to the rapper’s house and talked with him for hours after how much he meant to him and the city.
Even though he’s spent the last three seasons in San Antonio and far from The North, it is clear that their love and admiration has not waned, A shoutout from the city’s biggest rapper in one of his songs perfectly captures how they feel about one of their most beloved athletes.