The list of things the common man could ever even dream about beating rap music’s unquestioned Lord and Saviour, one Kanye ‘Yeezus’ West at, is about as long as Ned Flanders’ criminal record. Biologists and anthropologists alike are all way too afraid to get close enough to be able to analyse Ye’s biological makeup and prove the hypothesis true, but there is a good chance that he is not, in fact, human. Or even from this galaxy.
The dude is really as close to an earthbound God as we’re going to get, is what I’m trying to say.
So when news of today’s blasphemy, that two music writers got the chance to not only shoot hoops with the Great One back in 2009 (a mere 11 days after Taylor Swift had the audacity to put a dampener on his evening by winning an award for a video that was absolutely not the greatest of all time… all time) and have now come out with a detailed scouting report on both what to expect and even how to beat Kanye on the blacktop, I had to scoff.
The same Kanye West whose wife can rent out the Staples Centre for a game of ball for him on a whim? The same Kanye West who averages a triple double, no assists? The same Kanye West who jumped over the Jumpman!?
You know nothing, Los Angeles-based music writers. Nonetheless, the avid basketball fan in me getting the better of my devotion to Yeezus Christ as well as needing something else basketball to distract me from the dumpster full of burning garbage that is about to be my beloved Brooklyn Nets’ 15-16 season, I gave their little scouting report a cursory glance over.
Considering that the pick up game they played with West occurred just days after the VMAs controversy, with Taylor Swift fans and daytime talking heads all but howling for his blood, and even President Barack Obama calling him a jackass, you could say that there was definitely a cloud hanging over Kanye at this point in time. And yet he still found the strength to lace up his Jordans and get on the court, which to me is the equivalent of the aforementioned Michael Jordan’s flu game right there.
According to the writers, Kanye warmed up for this game by playing full court 21, which is a game that most sane people and non-athletes would happily play in the halfcourt setting. Not Kanye. Kanye doesn’t do a damn thing in half measures.
Despite his status as a deity, Kanye has, according to the writers, assumed the form of a man of a slight stature at 5’8″. For comparison, former Charlotte Hornets point guard and underrated MVP of Space Jam, Muggsy Bogues was 5’3″, former slam dunk champion and certified leprechaun Nate Robinson is 5’9″. You may laugh at such small stature, but this is a diabolical ploy on Kanye’s part, to lull opponents into a false sense of security and avoid being triple-teamed were he to play in his rarely witnessed final form of 8’11”.
As far as his offensive game goes they marvel at the range on his jumpshot, which naturally stretches well beyond the arc, though given his status as a visionary I’d try to be on him like glue the second he stepped off his own baseline, a full-court shot for Kanye would probably be like a layup for the rest of the world.
Despite his triple-double no assists reputation, Kanye was apparently feeling benevolent on this day and showed off a very adept passing game, dishing killer passes to teammates up and down the court. Where Kanye’s weakness on the court apparently lies is in his favouritism for driving right, often using that hand to keep defenders at bay. Forcing him to go left apparently causes Ye all sorts of problems. They also argue that keeping your hands up on defense will work given his height and his subsequent lack of a solid fadeaway. They also claim he lacks a killer crossover and can be kind of mechanical in finishing at the rim.
In terms of defense though, you are apparently going to get utterly hounded. Kanye is an in-your-grill defender in the vein of Kawhi Leonard or Tony ‘First Team All Defense!’ Allen, not one to sag off or let you have an easy lane to the hoop. No word on how his help defense or rim protection were, but according to the writer, Kanye’s major contributions were on defense and he somehow didn’t score a single bucket in the first two games of 5-on-5.
And yet, Team West went 2 and 0. Because the man is a winner by nature and because he probably wanted the games to at least be a little exciting for everyone else involved. He’s simply too great a person to approach these unimportant games of basketball in the James Harden manner.
And with that, and the arrival of an enormous crowd who wished to be gifted the present of Kanye’s presence, Lord Yeezus faded into the mists of the locker room and didn’t play anymore. And so ends possibly the greatest anecdote I have read all year.
But as far as reliable scouting reports go? Please.