Once news about Deion Sanders high stepping his way into the Hall Of Fame broke earlier this spring, I felt obligated to put something down. Not only will he be remembered as the greatest corner of his era (although some argue Rod Woodson), but also as one of the last two-sport athletes, the legendary touchdown celebrations, his unwillingness to tackle and a man who was the deciding factor in two consecutive Super Bowls. Still, all of that would be written about over the months, by writers 100x better than yours truly. So what exactly is there to say about Deion that hasn’t already been said?
I thought about it for days, but then it hit me like a Kevin Durant three at the Rucker. His music career!
See, at 25 years of age, this means I was born in the ’80′s, but really began to live life in the ’90′s. The same can somewhat be said about Hip-Hop. The genre was thrust into the limelight, often for all the wrong reasons during the early years of the decade. My love of sports grew during this time as well. For some reason, and to this very day I have no clue what came over me, I bought Deion Sanders’ “Must Be The Money” on cassette tape. With my own damn money, at that.
In hindsight, Primetime’s career as a rapper made sense. The charisma was there (dare I say “swag”?) as well as the self-centered nature. What would really put the song over the top was the cheesy, “my-life-is-the-shit,” yet grossly entertaining music video. Deion was doing what resembled “The Robot” and his own endzone celebrations on several occasions to go along with semi-choreographed dance numbers at others. Even the great Darryl Strawberry was in the video.
A clusterf*ck of ingredients indeed, but Deion’s place in athlete Hip-Hop is settled. Shaq is the undisputed G.O.A.T., but after that the rankings get hazy with the likes of Allen Iverson, Roy Jones, Jr., Kobe Bryant and most recently Delonte West. All things considered, Deion could be the second greatest athlete-rapper in history. Have we all forgotten his appearance on the Street Fighter soundtrack with MC Hammer and had Jean Claude Van Damme smoking a cigar rocking out in the video? So yes, you see, if he’s not better than Shaq, he’s the closest one.
With today being dubbed “Deion Sanders Appreciation Day” by the good folks at EdTheSportsFan.com, I raise my champagne glass in honor of Primetime. He brought me my last Cowboys Super Bowl, and for that I’m eternally grateful because Lord knows when He’ll bless me with another. Before exiting stage right, I leave you with one of my favorite Hip-Hop quotables ever. Ok, not ever, but definitely top 85. And top five as it relates to fiscal responsibility.
“The first thing people say is, ‘Prime, don’t let money change you.’ I say, don’t let money change you because personally it’s gon’ change my address, phone number, wardrobe. Hey, my snakeskin boots gon’ change into gators. Hey, my library card gon’ change into credit cards. You know what I’m sayin’? So, don’t let money change YOU.”