Popular rapper Common, earlier known as Common Sense, was once a ball boy with the Bulls. He had a Michael Jordan story to tell us all.
The 49-year-old is a Chicago native, and grew up as a Bulls fan. He was in high school when Jordan was winning his first few scoring titles and putting the league on notice. Rap culture and rappers have always been influenced by basketball, and Common is no exception.
Lonnie Rashad Lynn (his actual name) is the son of former ABA player Lonnie Lynn. Naturally, he has some roots and a background in basketball. It seems just natural that Common’s dad would get him a job with the Bulls as a teenager, despite a divorce.
— SLAM (@SLAMonline) February 27, 2015
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Common narrates how Michael Jordan once asked him to forge his autograph
As a global basketball superstar, it seems obvious that MJ’s was a much sought-after signature. It is estimated that the man spent several weeks of his lifetime just signing memorabilia and taking pictures with fans.
As a ball boy, Common thought he’d pull a favor for a friend by getting him an autograph. But Jordan had other ideas:
“So, I went, and I said, ‘Look, Mike, can you sign this for this kid,” Common explained. “And he was like, ‘you sign it.’ It was like a joke. ‘You sign it.”
The ballboy complied—you disagree with Jordan at your own risk—and eventually brought the autograph to his friend. That set up an awkward exchange based on an embarrassing error.
“I signed it and took it back to the kid,” Common continued. “And the kid looked at it and said, ‘Wait, this is not Michael’s autograph.’ I said, ‘how did he know?’ I spelled Michael wrong. I didn’t get the $5.”