As previously reported by The Root, the next battle in the Verzuz Cinematic Universe is taking place tonight.
New York-based rap groups the Lox and Dipset will go head to head in front of a handful of live and livestreamed fans beginning at 9:30 p.m. ET at Madison Square Garden in New York City. But before showing each other up on the stage, the Lox rapper Styles P and Dipset’s Jim Jones decided to get the fun started hours earlier by taking it to the streets instead. Well, the social media streets, that is.
According to Complex, the two rival rappers began going back and forth after Styles P posted a nearly 13 minute-long Instagram Live-turned-IGTV video poking fun at Jones, calling into question Jones’ “mental shape” and even going so far as to offer a book recommendation to the “We Fly High” rapper.
“I’m not gonna over-troll. This is not really a troll, it’s more like a PSA slash troll,” Styles P began before going into the incident that spawned the video. Jones allegedly had taunted him prior about being physically out of shape, to which Styles P actually agreed with. But upon further reflection the “Gave It To’Em” rapper realized that he was actually more fit than he realized—at least where his mental state is concerned.
“My mental shape is great. Jim, you bring the bars and I’ll bring the books if you wanna do that. This is a book from my brother but I did read this,” Styles P continued while holding up a book authored by Talib Kweli. “My mental shape is great, I just read this. I want you to read too Jim, I want you to start reading. I want you to start picking up books. Because the biggest part about rapping, Jim, is words. I don’t know if you know that. Not vampire clothing,not muscles, not drip. I love but WORDS.”
Jones subsequently hopped in the comments, firing back: Lol I have my high school diploma do u? To which Styles P responded, “Actually have a diploma and G.E.D. beloved.”
Jones then commented, “I think u know I’m pretty equipped when it comes to intelligence as u never had these many likes since I poked u in ur stomach lol. Thts called Marketing if u didn’t know.”
“My G is authentic, not to be marketed. I market health to my community,” Styles P replied back.
Listen, I don’t know why Styles P decided to invoke the spirit of Iyanla Vanzant with this whole “beloved” spiel, but I’d be lying if I said this fun little exchange didn’t make me that much more anticipatory about tonight’s showdown. Verzuz battles have long ceased to be about actual hit for hit tallys, so I’m glad to see that the overall theme of having fun and enjoying the music continues to take center stage.
You can catch tonight’s battle between the Lox and Dipset by tuning into the official Verzuz page on the Triller and Fite TV. at 9:30 p.m. ET. If you don’t have Triller or Fife TV, you can also watch on the official Verzuz Instagram page as well.