Hip-hop music has always gone hand-in-hand with sports. The popular saying, “ballers want to be rappers, and rappers want to be ballers” has always been evident and now, more than ever. With the increase of sports athletes displaying their love for the hip-hop genre, many athletes have shown their rhyming skills through music videos, songs, or even on-the-spot freestyles. Today, XXL acknowledges these sports athletes who have dared to step on the mic and showcase their rhymes.

Most recently, New York Giants’ Pro Bowl wide receiver, Odell Beckham Jr., took to Instagram and showed off a new set of skills. Instead of the typical dancing clips he posts on a regular to his IG, the NFL superstar decided to post a clip of himself freestyling in front of his camera phone while chilling in his car. Joining the likes of Allen Iverson, Metta World Peace, Clint Dempsey, John Cena and more, Beckham proves that he’s another athlete with a love for hip-hop and some what of a talent for rapping.

As the world of sports awaits the 50th Super Bowl between the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers, as well the 2016 NBA All-Star Weekend in Toronto, XXL goes back in time to check out 15 of the most notable athletes from all sports, past or present, who have decided to showcase their freestyling skills on the mic.

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