Before he was signed to Mass Appeal & Def Jam as the next big rapper out of Harlem, Dave East was a Division I basketball player who played at both the University of Richmond in Virginia and Towson University in Baltimore.

Dave recently sat down with Slam Magazine at a Bronx gym for a new interview, and discussed life before his rap career took off, which consisted mostly of basketball. Dave would tell Slam stories of playing AAU basketball with superstars Kevin Durant & Michael Beasley, along with San Francisco 49ers linebacker Navarro Bowman, who played point guard ironically back in high school.

Dave also talked about Durant’s first reaction to hearing him rap, which was on 2010’s Change Of Plans. “He was like, “Yo, that’s you rapping? That’s crazy,'” Dave recalls. “He was like, ‘I got a studio in the crib. Whenever you free and you wanna come out here, I’ll make sure you get out here.’ I was like, I’m free right now,” and Kevin flew Dave out to OKC to work on music.

Watch that & more in the interview (below). Read the full cover story here.