At long last, Lil Durk and Lil Baby have finally delivered their highly anticipated joint album The Voice of the Heroes, and the scorching 18-track project features guest appearances from Young Thug, Rod Wave, Meek Mill, and Travis Scott.

Fans have had a lot to say about the 4PF and OTF artists' official team-up, and now it looks like there will be even more to talk about, considering that one of the NBA's biggest stars was reportedly heavily involved in helping The Voice of the Heroes see the light of day.

Lil Baby and Lil Durk attend Basketball Weekend Party Hosted by Lil Baby & Lil Durk at The Dome Atlanta on March 7, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia.

According to AllHipHop, James Harden is listed as the executive producer for The Voice of the Heroes. Even considering James Harden and Lil Baby's heavily documented friendship, the news that Harden played a major role in one of the biggest Hip-Hop releases of the year is still extremely surprising.

"From the beginning, I’ve had a passion for basketball, and music has always went hand and hand with it," James Harden states while speaking on his involvement in The Voice of the Heroes. "It drives me on the daily to continue to be the best at what I do, to always strive for more. I see that same passion in Lil Baby & Lil Durk and can honestly I say I'm a true fan. The initial idea was to get the two together to make a few songs. But with their work ethic and undeniable talent here we are."

"From late nights in my studio in Houston, the two of them being by my side as I transitioned from Houston to New York it was truly an honor to watch them in their element," The Brooklyn Nets guard continues. "Countless hours in the studio watching them create was an absolute privilege, to say the least. They put the same work & dedication into their craft as I do. Leaving all-night studio sessions going straight to practice with the songs they made gave me a newfound motivation. The Voice & The Hero two killers at the top of their game the collaboration only seemed right. I just hope the same impact they have on me, they have on world."

At the start of the 2020-2021 NBA season, James Harden infamously ditched the Houston Rockets in order to party with Lil Baby and celebrate his birthday in Atlanta. Plus, there was also a viral video that surfaced last year showing the rapper and basketball player in the studio, and James Harden looked extremely enthusiastic while listening to the 4PF rapper preview an unreleased track.

Now, The Voice of the Heroes arrives amidst Harden's latest playoff run, and this year, the new Brooklyn Nets star has a great opportunity to get his first ring. We probably won't see videos of Harden hitting the club with Lil Baby until after his playoff journey is over, but in the meantime, the Nets guard has taken to Instagram to promote Lil Baby and Lil Durk's latest project.

James Harden now joins the ranks of NBA players like LeBron James and Ja Morant, who have previously worked closely with artists like 2 Chainz and Moneybagg Yo, respectively. The sensational Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant recently served as the inspiration for Moneybagg Yo's "Rookie of the Year," and in 2019, LeBron famously served as executive producer for 2 Chainz' fifth studio album Rap or Go to the League.

Check out The Voice of the Heroes here and watch the music video for the early album standout "How It Feels" below.

[via]