Words By Preezy
“You are now about to witness the strength of street knowledge…”
-NWA, “Straight Out Of Compton”
Those two idle weeks in-between the NFL conference championship games and the Super Bowl are both excruciating and exhilarating. But this season, those 14 days were a welcome respite from the tumultuous regular season that NFL fans just experienced. Instead of focusing on the actual games being played on the gridiron, pigskin enthusiasts were preoccupied with following the trickery of the league’s top officials, most notably NFL commish, Roger Goodell. Known to be ruthless when it comes to enforcing suspensions and fines on players who break the terms of the leagues Personal Conduct Policy, Goodell has become a symbol of the establishment that has kept its foot on the neck of people of color — Blacks and Hispanics in particular — while being dismissive of their wants and needs.
It would be a disservice to not admit that a number of players that have been at the mercy of judge Goodell’s gavel deserved their punishments, but it bothers many that when it comes to violations committed by owners like Jim Irsay and others, the disciplinary actions handed down are lightweight in comparison. Add in the latest conspiracy that is Deflate Gate involving the New England Patriots — who seem to be one of the leagues darling franchises and whose owner, Bob Kraft, has been publicized as being quite cozy with NFL officials over the years and controversial isn’t even the word to describe the 2015 playoffs.
The time spent waiting for the biggest sporting event of the year can feel like forever, but it also breeds an air of anticipation like no other. Some place bets, make predictions, and plan Super Bowl parties to kill the time, and while I do partake in a bit of that, I also have a weird fascination with finding the deeper connections the moment and drawing parallel to the past.
This time around, that parallel includes a few key members of the Seattle Seahawks and a certain legendary rap crew that transcended the genre of hip-hop and whose impact would be felt at the highest levels of government and society. That crew is none other than N.W.A., who made a major impact on the music world in the late ’80s with their brash brand of social commentary and no f*cks to give attitude. The same can be said about Earl Thomas, Kam Chancellor, Doug Baldwin, Russell Wilson, Richard Sherman, and Marshawn Lynch. What N.W.A. was to rap, they are to modern day sports in their own unique way.
Kam Chancellor and Earl Thomas are the backbone of the Legion Of Boom, the Seahawks much-talked about secondary known for putting the hurt on opposing offenses. Similar to Dr. Dre and DJ Yella, the pair lays the template for everything that makes Seattle so imposing on the field and set the tone from a physicality standpoint, much like the bombastic soundbeds by Dre and Yella did for N.W.A.
Wideout Doug Baldwin, much like MC Ren, is the unsung hero of the group. Known for his poignant post-game interviews and being the consummate teammate, Baldwin’s occasional verbal bombs strike with the force of a vintage Ren verse, ala the ones featured on 100 Miles And Running and Niggaz4Life.