As 2021 comes to a close, the only subject worthy of discussion in the battle rap streets is that of Champion of the Year!
The annual competition to decide the best battler of the year, or COTY, hosted by premier battle rap media platform Champion, is underway. Surveys have been issued, and a GoFundMe has been launched to raise the prize winnings. The total currently sits at $5,423, over halfway to the $10,000 goal.
The race is hotly contested as this year brought more battles than the culture has ever seen before. There are several favorites touted as potential winners for the title. They include two-time previous winner Geechi Gotti, Rum Nitty, A. Ward, and Eazy The Block Captain.
Champion’s own Jay Blac was in a Twitter Space yesterday morning (Dec. 28) debating the topic. Various battle rappers, including some in contention for COTY, passed through the discussion. Tsu Surf was one of the more opinionated debaters. While the New Jersey rapper has ruled himself out as a potential winner many see him as a viable contender. Despite having only three battles this year, he argues, and many agree, he is yet to lose a round in 2021.
On the opposite end of the spectrum but also in contention is A. Ward. One of the year’s most prolific battlers, Ward’s consistency is near unmatched with few clear losses this year across a range of competition. However, the Christian battler is yet to touch the URL stage, something many believe prevents him from winning COTY. Ultimate Rap League is considered the “NBA of Battle Rap’” and some fans think a performance on the platform is necessary to secure COTY.
Tsu Surf & Jay Blac Debate COTY
When the topic inevitably turned to A. Ward, Jay Blac confirmed the rules allow for a winner who has not battled on URL. According to Blac, it’s simply a numbers game rather than any bias to the brand. While there are three main leagues – King of the Dot, Rare Breed Entertainment, and URL – they aren’t on level footing. “URL throws the most events,” he said. “It’s really that simple. 85 percent of the events thrown are URL events.”
Nevertheless, Surf was confident a battler could not win COTY within the next 5 years without battling on the URL. So confident, he will give $5,000 to anyone able to do it. Surf claimed that though URL throw “85 percent of the events” they also have “85 of the talent.” Furthermore, he pointed out the difference in pressure the URL spotlight brings and the impact this has on performance.
Jakkboy Maine offered it was more about the big names that fans pay money to see. “RBE doesn’t have the draws,” he said. Blac countered and said the other leagues need to throw “a lot more events” to even up the score.
Could Geechi Gotti Take A Third Title?
Meanwhile, Geechi Gotti who was COTY 2018 and 2019, delivered an impassioned speech detailing his view on why he is the only worthy winner this year.
A. Ward Lists His Contenders
After days of being at the center of the discussion, A. Ward took some time out to reflect and was inspired to share his thoughts with his fans. He named four battlers and detailed why they should also be in the race alongside him for COTY.
Be on the look out for AllHipHop’s annual Battle Rap Superlatives survey, coming soon!