This past Saturday night, King of the Dot launched its Ground Zero tournament with simultaneous events in Los Angeles and Toronto. Both events went smoothly and were packed with high-quality performances.
TOBattleBlog saw the Toronto event first-hand (and even judged three of the GP battles), but we also have exclusive notes from KOTD West Coast’s J-Pro, who was in L.A.
At the Toronto event
- Performance of the night went to Notez, who cemented his reputation as KOTD’s Ol’ Dirty Bastard with a thoroughly entertaining showing against Yung Casper. He and Realiztic crowded Casper while doing a call-and-response scheme with the rest of his corner, then he donned a ski mask after dropping a Daylyt reference … all in the first round. This came about 45 minutes after an alleged altercation between Notez/Realiztic and some guy outside the venue who wasn’t treating a lady the way a gentleman should.
- Chris Tipsy/Step Easy, eMCeeBill/Teddy KGB and Postal/KP all could’ve gone either way, but battle of the night went to Kinaze and Luciano Crakk. Crakk had a clean performance, and brought a level of sophistication to his bars that showed why he’s not only the man to beat in the Toronto division, but a contender against anyone coming out of the West Coast. Kinaze had a lot of dope material and the best rebuttal of the night, but the crowd reactions he was getting were coming loudest out of his own corner.
- Weirdest reference of the night came from Bulle with: “In the words of Bonnie Raitt I’m gonna give him something to talk about,” although Yung Casper‘s Big Bang Theory reference to Sheldon also felt out-of-place in between his typical gun bars.
- Lokust rebuttled Forkfarm mid-round, thinking that he was done. Fork let him get the whole scheme off and then said that he wasn’t actually finished. “There’s a first time for everything,” Organik commented.
- Lokust and I have a similar beard and body size, so I spent a lot of the night getting mistaken for him and having people tell me I did a great job – twice by the same guy.
- Familiar faces in the crowd included Arcane, 100 Bulletz, Knamelis, Aftershock and Scott Jackson.
- References to 100 Bulletz: Two, including one for being too much of a Dizaster supporter.
- References to Arcane: Two, including one from Luciano Crakk about “buying bars” while he was standing right next to him. Arcane took it with a smile.
- References to Jus Daze: Too many to count, although I’m not exactly sure why.
At the L.A. event
Meanwhile, on the other end of the continent, the Ground Zero battles were propped up with a strong card of GrindTime alumni. We asked battler J-Pro for his thoughts on the night over email:
Anyone notable show up in the audience?
King Tech (Sway & Tech), DJ Starscream (Slipknot) and Dizaster. The other notables were either battling or hosting.
Best GZGP battle: Lefty 2 Gunz vs. Lex D
Best overall battle: Cadalack Ron vs. Tantrum
Performance/Line of the night?
GZGP performance– Ayem
GZGP line- I can’t remember, but Lex D had about 10 haymakers.
Overall performance: Tantrum
Did you think anyone got robbed?
No, I agreed with every decision.
What else went down behind the scenes?
- QP said he was taking a train from Stockton to LA. When that failed, he got a ride with Remy D. Their car broke down, and he didn’t make it.
- Jayk Gallagher told my friend he was going to make Cobalt cry… He didn’t.
- One of Caddy‘s boys stood behind Caddy during his rounds, then ran over to Tantrum‘s side to hate on Tantrum while he was rhyming. So on cam, you’ll see the dude hyping up Caddy, then mean muggin Tantrum. G-Money, our “celebrity” coin tosser, had some words with him about his little tactic. Hahahahaha
**Update from Cadalack Ron over Twitter: “For the record. My buddy wasn’t trying to intimidate @Tantrumonthemic. I think he was filming the battle on his cell phone” **
**Update from Tantrum over Twitter: “funny thing is i barely realized any of that side stuff was happening while i was spitting my verses. too zoned…i also never felt any animosity from Ron’s boy. i mean i even chopped it up with him outside before the battle” **
- Tantrum‘s 3rd round was so crazy, Diz had to walk away before it ended.
- A fight almost broke out when one of Knoeital‘s friend’s repeatedly interrupted the judges’ comments.
- Malathion screamed “TIME” on Jayk Gallagher, Jayk didn’t listen, Malathion then shouted “TIME, TIME, TIME!”
Huge respect to J-Pro for those notes. Follow him on Twitter.
We asked Ayem, the perceived favourite in the L.A. bracket for his comments. He echoed what J-Pro said about Knoeital stumbling and his boys trying to start a fight during the judging. He added that Megadef and Cobalt45 seemed to be completely different people by how much they improved.
To keep up with more Ground Zero events on Twitter: