John Salangsang/Associated Press
The Toronto Raptors announced Thursday they renamed their training facility the OVO Athletic Centre as part of a collaboration with rapper Drake, who owns the October’s Very Own brand.
Toronto posted a video about the change, highlighted by giving a key to the building to Drake:
Toronto Raptors @Raptors
We made it happen. Introducing the OVO Athletic Centre.
@welcomeOVO | #WeTheNorth https://t.co/8Z2Trv6evi
The Toronto-born superstar first signed on as a team ambassador in 2013 and expanded the partnership in January 2018 with the introduction of OVO-inspired jerseys.
Raptors president Masai Ujiri called Drake the “King of Toronto” during last year’s announcement.
“Over the past four years, the Raptors’ relationship with Drake has always ultimately been about celebrating this city and the people that make it unique. We have something very special happening in Toronto and Drake is a big part of that. We’re looking forward to this opportunity to continue working together to inspire and support young people, to showcase this great city around the world and to grow the game of basketball.”
Drake added: “So for us, my biggest thing that I’m most proud of in this partnership is the million dollars that we’re gonna be giving to the city to re-do these courts and hopefully create an amazing atmosphere for anyone in that community to come out and either play casual basketball or, you know, potentially breed the next generation of Canadian basketball superstars.”
The Raptors are also enjoying a strong season on the court with a 48-20 record that ranks second in the Eastern Conference.