Damian Lillard is a man of many talents. One of them is being able to put up big scoring totals against pretty much any team in the National Basketball Association.
Another of those talents is Lillard's ability on the mic, where he goes by the name Dame D.O.L.L.A. and honestly spits fire.
However, despite the first impressions you can take from the moniker he raps under, Lillard is using the platform that he has - thanks to his basketball pedigree - to do good and bring awareness to situations through his songs.
That was on show more than any other in his song 'Bigger Than Us' where he teamed up with Paul Rey to rap about the struggles going on in America and implore people that there is a better way to deal with anger towards police in the wake of Ferguson and all the other incidents that incited the rise of the Black Lives Matter over the past two years.
Lillard's goal, it seems, is to raise awareness of what's going on and express that there is a way to change the situation everyone goes through as African-Americans in modern-day America.
"I felt like it was important that it was addressed," Lillard said earlier this year when Bigger Than Us dropped.
"It affects all of us, whether in a positive or a negative way. For someone with my platform, I felt like it was a great opportunity to express that. I'm not on either side. You know, I think that when we stand together, a lot more can be accomplished."
Lillard has an experience with racial profiling. While a senior at Weber State, the future Portland Trail Blazers point guard was stopped by police while driving in Nevada and was made to sit on the curb for three hours as the patrolmen tore apart his car looking for drugs.
Lillard plays that down, though, with an exceptional sense of poise and perspective.
"There are people out there who have experienced way worse," he said.
A Brief History
So, where did this all start? Four bars. Four simple bars.
Not long after entering the NBA, Lillard started a social media craze, #4barfriday. This was a way for him to use his massive social media platform to feature not only his skills but bring light to other talented lyricists from around the world.
4 bar Friday took off like rocket fuel, with Friday after Friday being filled with lyricists submitting their best bars for Lillard to post on his page.
Lillard then took his own skills to an interview with former MTV host Sway. During this interview, the point guard freestyled over Jay Z’s “Dead Presidents” and rapped about his journey as a child growing up in Oakland and the struggle he went through to become who he is today.
“Me being the chosen one was like a blessing in inception, A city known for homicide, majority depression… Grinding in the gym so I can live through the recession.”
That's when we got the first real taste of Dame DOLLA and he hasn't taken his foot off the throttle since; both on and off the court.
And we hope he stays that way.