This season marked Vince Carter’s 22nd season in the NBA and at season’s end, the eight-time NBA All Star retired.
Carter had career averages of 16.7 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game playing for the Toronto Raptors, New Jersey Nets, Orlando Magic, Dallas Mavericks, Phoenix Suns, Sacramento Kings, Memphis Grizzlies and the Atlanta Hawks.
On a recent episode of #WORDSWITHSCOOP Presented by Orox Leather, Master P shared me what it was like to be teammates with Vince Carter.
“Man, I gonna tell you something that I’d seen,” he told me.
“I saw Vince Carter knock a quarter off the top of the backboard and when I seen that, I was like, “This don’t make no sense! Incredible.”… Incredible player, great attitude…that’s why he stayed around so long. So the guy always put in the work.”
Master P chartered a successful career as founder and CEO of the independent record company No Limit Records.
A successful rap artist with multiple Grammy awards, Master P also oversaw the record label and film arm of his brand. He also has a longtime connection with the NBA. In 1998, he was signed to a preseason contract by the Charlotte Hornets. In 1999, he got a similar deal with the Raptors. “I mean, we had Vince Carter, Tracy McGrady, Charles Oakley and I mean man…we just had some incredible players on that team so, if you couldn’t play basketball you was gonna get exposed,” said Master P.
“People weren’t even coming into the gym at that time.”
Master P never appeared in an NBA game, however. He had a brief stint in the CBA, with the Fort Wayne Fury, as well as in the International Basketball League and the American Basketball Association. He appeared in the NBA’s Celebrity Game over All-Star weekend twice, in 2008 and 2017.
“I know it’s difficult for people to see because they don’t really understand that this man sold 100,000,000 records but he played in the NBA,” Master P told me.
“It was a LOT of hard work. I was the top high school player in basketball and also in college, and you’ll see that in the documentary. You’ll get a chance to see and get to know my basketball background. Basketball was separate from the music side, but basketball got me out of the ghetto and it was able to put me in a place where I could be who I am. Without that and having a coach that had an understanding of life that taught me a lot of values too. I know it might shock people to see me playing, but they don’t know I really put the work down – I had to go to the CBA; it wasn’t easy and to get into the NBA is not an easy process. So, I was blessed. Me and Earl Boykins used to go at it in the CBA. We both came from the CBA. It was a lot of big time players’ man that you might’ve seen in the NBA that had to work themselves up – my first 10 day people don’t know was with Steve Nash and the Dallas Mavericks. You couldn’t wait to get called up to the NBA and it was a war every night man, so basketball was a part of my life and saved my life and it changed my life.”