A fascinating story in The New York Times today considers a strangely uneven relationship: Despite the fact that rapper, producer and super-mogul Sean “Jay-Z” Carter owns only a fraction of a percent of the NBA’s Brooklyn-bound Nets franchise, his heavy hand is visible in nearly every corner of their re-branding project.

Not only is Jay-Z headlining opening week at Brooklyn’s monster Barclays Center venue, aka the Nets’ new home field; he also helped design the team’s logos and advised their PR squad on everything from music selections (more indie, “less Jersey”) to security practices (“be sensitive” when checking attendees for weapons).

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