Drake and J. Cole have collaborated on wax in the past, but the Canadian rapper was able to assist the Dreamville founder with his other passion. Cole recently signed a deal to play in the Canadian Elite Basketball League thanks to help from the OVO founder.
According to a report Complex published on Tuesday, May 24, J. Cole apparently got the opportunity to pitch himself for the Scarborough Shooting Stars at a party Drake hosted last year. Nicholas “Niko” Carino, who's a co-owner of the team, recalled the time when Cole first expressed interest in joining the team while he was hanging out with Drake at a club in L.A.
“You know, Dreamville and OVO are family,” Carino said. “Drake had a birthday party in L.A. last year. The conversation was, ‘I heard you have your team.’ It organically grew from there.”
Since joining the team, Cole has made strides to embrace is teammates and the community. The rapper has gotten high marks during his first week of training camp and continues to prove himself worthy of his role on the team. Olu Famutimi, who's a veteran Canadian forward that has played in the U.S. and Europe, said he was impressed with Cole's hustle on the court.
“J. Cole, he’s really putting in the work,” Famutimi said. “Whatever we’re doing, he’s doing probably even more. Comes in early, stays late, and his drive right now, he wants to become better and wants to be known as a guy that can really hoop.”
J. Cole played professional basketball outside of the U.S. for the first time in 2021 when he played for the Patriots Basketball Club of the Basketball Africa League. He's expected to appear in the season opener against the Guelph Nighthawks on May 26 at 7 p.m. You can watch all the games throughout season here until it comes to a close on July 31.