I have witnessed a lot of tomfoolery on my Twitter timeline in recent days. As soon as Kendrick Lamar ended his hiatus with the monstrous “The Heart Part 4,” Rap Twitter had to bring up Drake. Why? Because that’s what rap Twitter does. Its members debate Drake and Kendrick Lamar until the data plans tap out. Even when it was determined that K-Dot was more than likely giving Big Sean bars on the track, the Twitter fingers returned to TDE vs. OVO.
It’s a running cycle that will never end, and that’s fine. While I mostly block out this debate in 2017, there was some fuckery that came up during this last go around that I just had to address.
There were ridiculous claims that Drake wouldn’t be able to hold his own in a beef with Kendrick. The debate wasn’t even about if Drake would win said imaginary beef—no, it was a really a question of if he could even hang. Get a bar or two off, sections of rap Twitter with Ab-Soul Control System hats wondered. Let me make this easy for you: Yes, Drake could hold his own in a beef with Kendrick Lamar. Of course he could.
All of a sudden Rap Twitter forgot how Drake handled the Meek Mill beef. He dismantled Meek not only with diss tracks—including the immaculate “Back to Back”—but cold-hearted, Internet-born tactics that drove the nail in the coffin. (See: the meme-filled demolition derby that was OVO Fest 2015.) To this day, Drake keeps punching at Meek when he’s down. Despite his persona as the soft Canadian perpetually in his feelings, Drizzy and the OVO gang are ready for that action. Sitting and plotting in a Toronto studio like it’s the Legion of Doom HQ.
Kendrick is not Meek, though—he’s far more savvy, he’s a better rapper and a better songwriter, and has a far more capable brain trust in his immediate corner—which would make this the biggest challenge of Drake’s career. But to say this would be a walk in the park for Dot is willfully ignorant of historical evidence. Sure, Kendrick can out rap everyone, but beef is about more than just that. And it’s foolish to think that Drake hasn’t already prepared for this moment, that he doesn’t have doesn’t already have evergreen bars for Kendrick on deck.
Despite the ghostwriter allegations Drake has continually proven that he’s ready for action, even while cuttings tracks like “Blem” and “Passionfruit.” His game has been continually tested and he’s over and over come back with the needed response. Again, a battle with Kendrick would be a whole different animal and Drake could very well lose, but let’s not act like this is David and Goliath. They’ve exchanged subs for years now, both throwing the bait out there, and to this point neither has really taken it. Will that change in the immediate future? Could be. But recall that the Jay Z and Nas situation bubbled for years before turning full blown. This story is still getting started.