If you’re even a casual fan of the NBA, then you’re probably used to seeing Bay Area rap pioneer E-40 sitting courtside while the Golden State Warriors win championship after championship. On Saturday night, E-40 was ejected from his courtside seat during the first game of the Kings and Warriors’ round-one series in Sacramento. In a statement, 40 called for an investigation, saying that he’d calmly responded to a heckler and blaming “racial bias” for the ejection.
Today, E-40 has released a new single called “Front Row 40.” Given recent events, people wondered whether this would be a song about that ejection. It’s not. Instead, it’s just E-40 rapping charmingly over an extremely Bay Area beat, celebrating his own local-dignitary status and talking about seeing himself up on the Jumbotron: “I love the area teams, I’m a superfan/ I’m sorta like Spike and Jack Nichol-saan”
On “Front Row 40,” E-40 talks about supporting his local baseball, football, and hockey teams, but he’s clearly most aligned with the Warriors. Right now, the Warriors, the reigning and defending NBA champions, look like they’re about to get bounced by a fired-up young Kings team, so maybe 40 just figured he had to drop the song before that happened. He did not manage to release the song before owners announced that the A’s were moving from Oakland to Las Vegas. Rough week for Bay Area sports.
The Kings and E-40 also released a joint statement on Wednesday saying there’d been a “miscommunication” that led to the rapper’s ejection.
After a series of thoughtful and transparent conversations, both parties agree that there was a miscommunication regarding the circumstances that occurred during the Kings vs. Warriors game on Saturday night.
Contrary to speculation, Mr. Earl “E-40” Stevens did not stand excessively from his ticketed courtside seat; the outcome resulted from an unfortunate misunderstanding between both parties.
The Kings will continue to equitably enforce the NBA Fan Code of Conduct to ensure guests can comfortably enjoy games free of disrespectful heckling and other disruptive conduct. The organization has been a longtime leader in promoting social justice and racial equality with a track record of measurable results and community impacts. Mr. Stevens has previously attended games at Golden 1 Center without incident, and the Kings look forward to welcoming him back to our arena in the future.
Check out the video below.