Appointed "Global Ambassador" of the Raptors last fall, Drake joined the TSN broadcast of Game 1 on Saturday, firing off a one-liner in the direction of rapper Jay-Z, who used to be a minority owner of the Nets.
"Jay-Z is somewhere eating a fondue plate," Drake said. "It's our time. We've got to keep it competitive. This is an ironic match-up."
The Toronto-born Drake is a regular presence at Raptors games and even handled the team's player introductions during "Drake Night" back in January. There was also some discussion in December that the Raptors might re-brand around the black/gold color scheme of Drake's OVO Sound record label, although nothing has materialized.
Jay-Z, a Brooklyn native, was a public face of the Nets as the franchise relocated from New Jersey to Brooklyn prior to the 2012-13 season. He later opted to drop his stake in the franchise so that he could expand Roc Nation Sports, a firm that represents professional athletes.
"My job as an owner is over but as a fan it has just begun," Jay-Z said in a statement announcing the transition. "I’m a Brooklyn Net forever."
The two hip hop artists have performed together in the past but have exchanged some barbs this year.
Drake's jab came a few hours after Raptors GM Masai Ujiri took a direct shot at the Nets. Before Game 1, Ujiri yelled "F--- Brooklyn" as he addressed thousands of fans gathered outside the Air Canada Centre. He later apologized.
The Saturday edition of the Toronto Sun also referred to the Nets’ veteran-dominated roster as “dinosaurs” and noted that “[Kevin] Garnett and [Paul] Pierce are so old [Toronto's mascot] the Raptor had to ask his dad about them.”
Toronto is making its first postseason appearance since 2008.