Despite owning a mere one-fifteenth of one percent of the Brooklyn Nets, rapper Jay-Z has largely become the face of the team. Now, in a recent report from the New York Times, fans can get a look into just how much influence the Roc Nation titan exerts on the team.
According to the report, Hova has been influencing the team and management's direction since he first opted to purchase a portion of the team. Since then, he's been able to infuse his own brand into the Nets franchise, including adding a 40/40 Club and Rocawear store to the team's Barclays Stadium, as well as stocking all VIP suites with his "Ace of Spades" champagne.
"As much as his partners...are getting out of him, Jay-Z, whose real name is Shawn Carter, is benefiting handsomely, too, beginning with free use of one of 11 exclusive 'Vault' suites, for which paying customers are charged $550,000 a year," reads the article. "Suite owners will have access to a champagne bar serving Armand de Brignac, an expensive bubbly that Mr. Carter promotes and in which he holds a financial interest...the arena will contain a 40/40 Club, an iteration of his sports-bar-style nightclub chain. There will be a Rocawear store, selling his clothing line, on the arena’s exterior. Even the advertising agency used by the Nets, Translation, is half-owned by Mr. Carter."
That doesn't mean that there hasn't been quite a bit of give to Jay's take; rather, he's been playing an active role in upkeep of the stadium and team. According to the report, Jay-Z's been integrally involved in everything from selecting halftime performances, to designing the logo, to even how security checks patrons for weapons and other illegal items - all in the name of improving the team's image.
“He is [the face of the team],” said the stadium's developer Bruce Ratner. “He is us. He is how people are going to see that place.”
NBA agent Aaron Goodwin added, “[Players are] going to take the phone call now [from the Nets]. They’re going to take the flight in. They’re going to listen. In years past, the Nets wouldn’t have gotten that. But now they’re in the game [because of Jay-Z].”
Check out the full article over at the New York Times.