During an appearance on The Norte Show in November 2017, Cardi B confirmed Nicki’s initial verse on the hit Migos track was different than the final version. DJ Akademiks reported that the Pinkprint rapper was asked to alter her rap because Cardi, who is also featured on the record, was mad Nicki had mentioned her name in a line.
Well, we now know that the rumor was at least half true.
In the expertly timed leak—posted by DJ Akademiks—you can hear Nicki drop Cardi’s name:
I'm with a couple bad bitches that'll rip the party
If Cardi the QB, I'm Nick Lombardi
Pull up in the space coupe, I done linked with Marty
I can actually afford to get a pink Bugatti
The final version replaced Cardi’s name with Quavo, which raises the question: Was Nicki trying to throw shade in her earlier verse?
Because Quavo was ultimately referenced in the line, many people have claimed that Nicki was simply giving a shout-out to Cardi, while also acknowledging her position in the rap game; however, others believe Nicki was attempting to put Cardi in her place by designating their respective roles and ranks.
After the original version surfaced, fans were left with many questions. If it truly was a diss, then why would Nicki feel comfortable replacing Quavo’s name with Cardi’s? On the other hand, if it was nothing more than a generous shout-out, why would she decide to take out the Cardi reference?
Nicki now claims she made the alteration at Atlantic Records’ request:
There have been a lot of whispers and controversies surrounding the “Motorsport,” specifically in regards to Nicki and Cardi’s relationship. Shortly after the track was released, people began speculating that Nicki was blindsided by Cardi's feature; however, Nicki claims she was informed about Cardi's contribution prior to the song's official drop.
“I was on the song w/Quavo. No one else was on it. He called & asked if I think we should put Bardi on it, I said ‘ok let’s do it.’ The end,” she tweeted. “Migos weren’t even on it yet. Just Quavo. The conspiracy theories r just so tired. Relax. Breathe. Imagine me not knowing who on a song w/me.”
Though it seemed like there is no bad blood between the NYC rappers, Nicki recently told Zane Lowe she was hurt by Cardi’s reaction to the feud rumors.
“The only thing with Cardi that really, really, really hurt my feelings was the first interview she did after ‘MotorSport’ came out [...] Up until this recent interview she did, I had never seen her show me genuine love in an interview,” Nick said. “I remember when I first came in the game, I would only be singing their praises and saying thank you. The first interview she did, it just hurt me because she looked so aggravated and angry, and the only thing she kept saying was, ‘I didn't hear that, she changed her verse.’ I was like, ‘What?’”