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Rapper Drake speaks during an NBA and Toronto Raptors press conference at the ACC in Toronto on Sept. 30, 2013. (Peter Power/The Globe and Mail)
Rapper Drake speaks during an NBA and Toronto Raptors press conference at the ACC in Toronto on Sept. 30, 2013. (Peter Power/The Globe and Mail)

Players react to Drake joining Raptors as 'global ambassador' Add to ...

Hip-hop star Drake stole the spotlight during the Toronto Raptors media day Monday. Here’s the reaction of some players to the news the Toronto-born rap icon has become the NBA team’s global ambassador:

“It’s great for the city, it’s great for the team, it’s great for the franchise. With a global artist like that, being around and being a marketing guy, it’s always really good to have something like that for the popularity of the team and the city and the organization.”

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– point guard Kyle Lowry

I just bought his album. I think he’s amazing. I’m excited to see him doing well. He’s not your ordinary rapper. He brings a lot of things with him: a lot of class, different types of fans and different types of business people.”

– guard D.J. Augustin

“Drake is definitely a worldwide artist. And in my opinion, one of the best rappers in the game today. With him being from Toronto and him backing us, it’s definitely big.”

– guard DeMar DeRozan

“I think it’s good for the city and for the fans, but for us, it doesn’t [allow] us to work any less. … It’s a brand. It’s all the same to us. It’s all pop culture – athletes, entertainers. What is he – a singer or a rapper? A sapper?”

– forward Rudy Gay

“A lot more people are going to recognize Toronto. … This is going to be good for the future and it’s definitely going to build up Toronto’s status.”

– forward Amir Johnson

He’s had such a big impact on the culture here. He moulds what the culture is in the hip-hop world and very much in the NBA world.”

– forward Steve Novak

“Not only is he a talented musician, he’s also a great person. The more people you can have like that surrounding you, the better.”

– centre Aaron Gray

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