Cleats Rhymes & Life

CRL Mailbag: Lyrics That Reference Athletes, Top Tiers Of All-Time NBA Players, Apple Music

In this edition of the Cleats, Rhymes & Life mailbag I answer your questions regarding LeBron James, Apple Music, Bray Wyatt’s lack of direction, and more. As usual, before we dive into any of that it’s time for my latest RECKLESS POWER RANKINGS.

This week’s rankings were inspired by a question I received from @FeitCanWrite on Twitter. He wanted me to include my top 5 lyrics referencing sports or athletes of all-time in this mailbag so here it goes…

  1. “A-yo Bo knows this (what?) and Bo knows that (what?)
    But Bo don’t know jack, cause Bo can’t rap
    Well what do you know, the Di-Dawg, is first up to bat!” – A Tribe Called Quest
  2. “You like Napoleon Bonaparte, I throw a dart and blow your bones apart. The lonely part’s when you fallin’ like you Owen Hart” – Jedi Mind Tricks
  3. “Cross the clear blue yonder, sea to shining sea
    I slam tracks like quarterback sacks from L.T” – Wu Tang Clan
  4. “Glitter, glisten, gloss, floss
    I catch a beat runnin’ like Randy Moss” – Outkast
  5. “With no receivers had the pickin of a option
    Tommie Frazier on the motherf*ckin one or two’s
    Or Michael Vick if y’all bark n****, y’all through” – Wale

Disagree with my list? Come at me bro in the comments section.

On to the mailbag!

Where does LeBron’s performance against GSW rank all-time for you? (Lynne via email)

Are we talking in all of sports or just NBA? I’ll assume NBA and I’ll limit this to NBA Finals performances. I’ve been watching the NBA Finals since 1991 and Bron’s first three games are right up there with Jordan’s ridiculous series in 1993 against the Suns and above D Wade’s performance against the Mavericks in 2006 and Tim Duncan’s demolition of the Nets in 2003 (Timmy had a QUADRUPLE-DOUBLE that series).

Apple Music…do you care? Should we care? (Justin L. via email)

As a heavy Spotify user I’m a little biased on this, but I’m having trouble seeing what this new service provides that we can’t already find elsewhere. We’re all people of habit so other than the Apple fanboys, I don’t see a mass migration to this service. However, this development did cause one writer to pose an interesting question: What If Major Artists Stopped Releasing Albums?

WHERE IS BRRAAY WYATTTT!?! (HeymanGuy619 via email)

First of all, cool email name. You don’t see names that look like Twitter handles too often in email addresses anymore. Secondly, it’s a shame that WWE Creative can’t find ANYTHING for Bray to do right now.

Thanks to the guys at, here’s a quick overview of what The Eater of Worlds has been up to recently:

May 18 (Raw): Defeats Dean Ambrose with help from The Authority
May 25 (Raw): Not booked
May 31 (Elimination Chamber): Not booked
June 1 (Raw): Loses to Roman Reigns in main event as the final hurdle for Reigns to earn entry into the Money in the Bank ladder match
June 8 (Raw): Not booked
June 14 (Money in the Bank): Not booked

For a guy that faced off against the damn Undertaker at Wrestlemania, his push has pretty much been derailed. Solution? Have him reunite with Harper and Rowen and begin recruiting the “lost causes” of the WWE. The Ascensions and the Bo Dallases of the world. If the plan is for him to be a special attraction that doesn’t wrestle often, have him be a puppet master behind the scenes leading his newly extended family.

The big debate on social media and in the media in general is whether or not LeBron James should be in the same GOAT conversation with Michael Jordan. Due to how the game differs from era to era it’s almost impossible to rank players one by one, but who would you have on your top tier of players? Who would be right below GOAT status? (George Tavin via email)

I had this same conversation on Twitter recently and it is strange how in baseball and hockey fans easily distinguish greatness between eras, but in basketball it’s all or nothing. You were either the greatest of all-time or worthless. For some reason we as fans don’t like to identify leaders of certain eras.

As for my no-brainer top GOAT tier, I’d have Michael Jordan, Bill Russell, LeBron James, Wilt and Kareem in there. You could make an argument that any one of those was the greatest player ever. Right below that I’d have guys like Dr. J, Kobe, Magic, Bird, Duncan, Oscar Robertson and Jerry West.

I’m sure no one will have any beef with what I just wrote. Especially Laker fans*.

*Is it me or are the only people on earth that rank any Laker players over Jordan Laker fans?



  1. Feit Can Write

    June 11, 2015 at 4:06 pm

    My favorite lyric: “There’s more to me than you’ll ever know. And I got more hits than Sadaharu Oh” -Beastie Boys

    • Derek Hernandez

      June 12, 2015 at 3:33 pm


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