You had to show and prove the skill to cop you a deal
Co-signs was void, shortcuts didn't exist
You had to go hard in the paint to score

from Murs (Ft. Ab-Soul & O.C.) – Life & Time Lyrics on Rap Genius

Meaning

You have to work hard and prove yourself because no other person is gonna help you. Going hard in the paint is a basket ball term for working hard in the key.

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