The passing of hip-hop pioneer Malik “Phife Dawg” Taylor has had a strong impact on the NBA’s New York Knicks.

The Big Apple’s hometown remembered Phife on its Twitter page this week.

Check out A Tribe Called Quest, Kendrick Lamar and Mac Miller’s reactions on the next page…

A Tribe Called Quest issued a statement on his passing once the news went viral yesterday (March 23).

“Our hearts are heavy. We are devastated. This is something we weren’t prepared for although we all know that life is fleeting. It was no secret about his health and his fight. But the fight for his joy and happiness gave him everything he needed. The fight to keep his family happy, his soul happy and those around him happy, gave him complete and unadulterated joy… until he heeded his fathers call.

We love his family his mother, his father, his son, his wife, his nieces, his family here in New York, Atlanta, California and Trinidad.

Thank you for the outpouring of prayers and support from the fans, fellow artists, music outlets, blogs, radio stations, DJ’s, social media and the music community at large. This too is part of his joy and means a lot to him. His family is overwhelmed by the support, well wishes and are thankful. His music and what he’s contributed is seismic and hard to measure. He’s affected us as much as he’s affected all of you. We’re inspired by his daily joy and courage. He wasn’t in pain. He was happy. We take comfort in knowing he will be beside his grandmother.” (Statement)

This week, rap star Kendrick Lamar paid homage to Phife during an Australia concert.

As the packed arena’s audience held their phones aloft, Lamar said, “Today, we lost one of the pioneers in hip-hop, by the name of Phife Dawg. Right now, ain’t nobody cheering about me. We’re gonna give it up for him, for allowing me to do what I’m doing on this stage right here, right now, today.” Then, he led the massive crowd in a call-and-response “Phife Dawg” chant, before concluding that “Forever hip-hop, we gonna be alright.” (Billboard)

Pittsburgh rapper Mac Miller also showed his respect to Phife with a tribute mix.

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