It’s only been nearly two weeks since Ice Cube announced his BIG3 Basketball League has become the first black-owned sports league. The groundbreaking news broke the internet with people everywhere praising Ice Cube for his accomplishment. Fast forward thirteen days later, the BIG3 League and Ice Cube are back in the news again, but not for breaking barriers.
Ice Cube is no stranger to success or controversy. The West Coast rap legend has become very wealthy thanks to his music and films, and despite a lot of his projects being geared towards helping create opportunities for new or under-represented talent, it seems someone is always accusing him of dropping the ball when it comes to payment. The latest person on the list is former NBA star, Nick Young.
Ice Cube’s complicated “history” of underpayment stems all the way back to his landmark film “Friday.” The low-budget movie was a passion project for Cube, who made it on a very small amount of money with all unknown actors. As a result, the majority of the cast made very little. When the film became a massive success, several of its stars got pay increases to return, like John Witherspoon, while the likes of Faison Love and Chris Tucker went elsewhere for even bigger payouts.
Cube got a reputation for underpaying his talent following an interview from Love and took to Twitter to vent about people not having to work with him if they did not want to and actors getting paid to scale based on the films. Just last week, Drake added a little extra fuel to this fire, posting an invoice from a show where he opened for Ice Cube back while he was just an actor on Degrassi. Drake took home a very small check, 100 Canadian dollars. This translated to about $73 bucks.
Everyone starts somewhere.— Ross Simmonds (@TheCoolestCool) October 20, 2022
In 2006, Drake was doing shows for $100 backing up artists like Ice Cube.
Don’t be ashamed of your price today.
Be motivated to see it rise. pic.twitter.com/Q41LN9o44u
NBA player Nick Young is calling out Ice Cube and his Big 3 basketball league. Young recently opened up to VladTV about the experience he had this past year playing for them. He claims that the league was run poorly, and often times players did not get paid. The former NBA player also claimed players make more money playing overseas. Also suggesting the league needs to find the right investors and get organized.
“Things got canceled. Games got canceled in the middle of the season. They didn’t know if they were gonna have a season. It was a lot, it was a lot this year.” Nick says it got so bad that they almost had to end the season early because the league ran out of money. He said the Big3 also pays way less than international leagues. Ice Cube has yet to respond.
Ice Cube has yet to address Nick Young’s claims, but fans are calling the former basketball player out for going public with this information. Some people believe this is part of smear campaign to overshadow Ice Cube’s milestone. Others called on the players to be patient being that it’s a new league.