The Nets are staying and moving at the same time. Earlier today, Jay-Z joined a group at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn that included developer Bruce Ratner and Brooklyn borough president Marty Markowitz, and announced the Nets will indeed be moving into the new arena in Brooklyn, and will keep the New Jersey team’s name. They’ll be no Brooklyn Bridges or Kings. It’ll be the Brooklyn Nets.
“From the moment the Barclays Center became a reality, I knew this meant something significant for Brooklyn,” Jay-Z told ESPNNewYork.com. “This is where I’m from, I’ll always be Brooklyn, and opening this arena will mean more to me than anywhere else. I also look forward to opening night for the Brooklyn Nets. We’re going to create an atmosphere like only Brooklyn can.”
People have laughed at the prospect of the Nets eventually making New York a legit double-basketball town. The Knicks are too big. But Markowitz fueled the pot, calling the vets across town the “Manhattan” Knicks.
Jigga also said he plans to perform eight concerts to celebrate the opening of the new arena.
What joints does Jay-Z need to play at these concerts to really make it a success? Obviously any Jay-Z concert is going to sell out and it’ll hot. But there’s a few specific songs he really needs to do. If we’re talking a midnight madness-themed celebration for the start of basketball in Brooklyn, there are a few must plays.
“WHAT WE DO” – w/ Freeway & Beanie Sigel
One of the all-time anthems. Tell me this song wouldn’t get the place crazy if Jigga and his crew came out to this? You could lead off with this, have it bat clean-up, DH it, the placement wouldn’t matter. It bangs like T-Mac.
“HELLO BROOKLYN 2.0” – w/ Lil’ Wayne
If I was making a list of my top 100 Jay-Z songs, I still probably wouldn’t mention this one. On my iTunes, it’s telling me I haven’t listened to this song since May 29. It gets no play. But if we’re celebrating the NBA in Brooklyn, how can this not make the cut?
So in a couple years baby, I’m a bring you some Nets…
“DIRT OFF YOUR SHOULDER”
The year that the Black Album dropped, there wasn’t a pre-game mix in all of Boston (where I went to high school) that wasn’t playing this. The actual Nets won’t be able to relate to this. But showering yourself with success is something anyone can appreciate.
“WHERE I’M FROM”
I’m from where they ball and breed rhyme stars/
I’m from Marcy son, just thought I’d remind y’all
One of Shawn Carter’s hardest joints ever should find its way into the lineup, even though most of the Nets’ ownership doesn’t want to hear about the place where “drug czars evolve” and where “the beef is inevitable.” Still, cough up a lung, where I’m from, Marcy son, ain’t nothing nice…
This is self-explanatory.
At some point in the concert, the vibe will start to die, legs will be getting tired, and throats sore. So you need that middle of the night jam to get things picked back up. Izzo is more consistent than anyone the Nets have had since Dr. J.
“BREATHE EASY (LYRICAL EXERCISE)”
Considering nearly all of the lyrical content in this bonus track could be used as a direct call to arms for his players – suicide drills over and over, jog in the graveyard, no struggles with underdeveloped muscles – this song should be included.
Besides, let the owner teach his players a little something about taking over:
I’m leading the league in at least six statistical categories right now/
Best flow, Most consistent, Realest stories/
Most charisma, I set the most trends/
And my interviews are hotter
This song’s chorus could easily be the Nets’ in-game anthem. It fits as a concert-rocker and in any type of basketball setting. The only problem is the lyrics are much closer to Pistol Pete leaving the competition shaking than Deron Williams and the Nets leaving anything shaking.
I got now…I don’t care who got next…
“ROC BOYS” – w/ Kanye West
This is a celebration concert right? Once the season starts, how many celebrations can the organization expect to have? There can’t be more than 10 Nets fans out there who legitimately believe this team is about to do big things. I think Dime writer Daniel Marks might be the only delusional fan that I know of.
We can give them one night… so throw this song in the concert somewhere and watch everyone go crazy.
“EMPIRE STATE OF MIND” – w/ Alicia Keys
Could Jay-Z seriously end the night with any other song besides this one? We will overlook Jay claiming he sits courtside, getting love from the enemy (the Knicks) just the often as does with his own boys as long as he brings Rihanna with him.
In New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made, oh
There’s nothing you can’t do, now you’re in New York
These streets will make you feel brand new
Big lights will inspire you, let’s hear it for New York
What songs does he have to play?
Follow Sean on Twitter at @SEANesweeney.
Follow Dime on Twitter at @DimeMag.
Become a fan of Dime Magazine on Facebook HERE.