8 Takeaways From The Game's ‘Drink Champs’ Interview

The Game goes deep on his recent work with Ye, his history with 50 Cent and G-Unit, this year's Super Bowl halftime show, and more during the four-hour chat.

The Game performs at a festival

Image via Getty/Scott Dudelson

The Game performs at a festival

The Game is the latest artist to give fans an hours-long Drink Champs experience, with the recent Ye collaborator’s previously teased interview going live on Friday.

The four-hour discussion sees Game speaking candidly with N.O.R.E. and DJ EFN about a wide range of topics, including (among other highlights) the decision to use a controversial Nick Knight image for the “Eazy” cover art, as well as his history with G-Unit and 50 Cent.

Also getting a significant chunk of conversational time is this year’s Pepsi Super Bowl LVI Halftime Show, with Game sharing his response to a hypothetical tour package featuring an expanded version of the same lineup. Around the 2:42:00 mark in the audio-only version of the experience, Wack 100 joined the discussion.

Below, we’ve rounded up a few key takeaways from the expansive interview. The full thing (featuring a brief cameo from Fat Joe) is also available to stream below the Black Effect and iHeartPodcasts:


Time stamps: 7:57, 10:00, 11:58, 12:24, 13:32, 1:37:20

From Game’s perspective, this year’s Super Bowl Halftime Show—featuring Dr. Dre, Kendrick Lamar, Mary J. Blige, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, and a surprise 50 Cent cameo—included “safe” lineup choices for the situation. 

“You gotta look at the Super Bowl, right. … Hov put it together and so he picked the artists that he thought was fit for the Super Bowl that he was in charge of putting together, right?” Game said around the 7:57 mark in the episode. “And that’s Hov, one of the greatest that ever did it. And look at what he do for the culture, and he’s always pushing us on them.”

Getting more specific, Game continued, “And you gotta think about the artists up there. Let’s say Kendrick Lamar, right. Kendrick Lamar’s from Compton, he’s from the West Side of Compton. But he’s non-confrontational. He’s not a gang member. He’s safe. He played his cards. But Kendrick is safe, he’s not gang-affiliated. He’s Kendrick, one of the dopest lyricists alive.”

Game said Snoop, 50, and Blige were “safe” choices too. “You don’t get on the prime time television unless they feel like it’s safe,” he said when talking about 50’s appearance around the 10:17 mark. Reiterating this point much deeper into the Drink Champs installment, Game said he himself wasn’t a “safe choice” for the Super Bowl.

Around the 11:58 mark, Game was asked to name what he would have performed if he had been part of the show. After joking he would have performed the 2005 diss “300 Bars and Runnin,” ​​​Game gave his real answer. 

“If I could have hit the stage or if n***as would’ve called me...if I could’ve been on the stage, I think maybe ‘How We Do’ or ‘Hate It or Love It’ would have been safe,” he said around the 12:24 mark. Later, Game was asked about the potential of him being interested in a tour based on a similar lineup as the Super Bowl.

“If the money was right,” Game conceded.

Time stamps: 29:26, 39:10, 40:00, 44:47

At multiple points in the interview, 50 Cent was mentioned, with Game expressing admiration for aspects of what 50 has done with his career while also reflecting on prior disagreements. 

Close to 30 minutes in the discussion, Game reflected on claims 50 was sharing early into his career about having written his album “like I really couldn’t do this shit by my own.” In Game’s eyes, he noted, they’re “equal.” Later, Game looked back on 50 announcing he was out of G-Unit, resulting in a detailed breakdown of a 2005 shooting incident centered on an infamous Hot 97 appearance from 50.

“I hear 50 say I’m out the group. I’m traveling everywhere I go with 70 Bloods, everywhere. … When we was in G-Unit we was getting 2 million a show. 50 was taking, like, 1.5,” Game recalled around the 39:10 mark.

Speaking more generally on what went wrong between the two, Game said they “fucked the money up” because he treated all of it as “real.” Additionally, per Game, certain conversations “were never had” that can now transpire.

“I’m feeling like, this is my Biggie and Pac moment,” Game said around the 44:47 mark when looking back on how it felt around the peak of the mid-2000s controversy. “And as stupid as this is going to sound to anybody watching, bro, I wanted to die in it like Pac and Big. Because I thought this is what happens. I bought into that. … I just wanted to beef until somebody died.”

Time stamps: 26:51

50’s 2003 classic “In Da Club” had Game feeling “really jealous” when he first heard it.

“These are the only two beats that I’ve been jealous of, like, really jealous of in my life. … It’s the first time I heard ‘In Da Club,’ I was like, I need that. And I was trying to think, like, should I just kill all these n****s and take this beat before the world hears it?”

Around the 27:27 mark, Game revealed that a classic Clipse song boasted the other beat that hit him in a similar way when he was first introduced to it.

“The other record that changed, that really made me wanna be who I am, is the first time I heard ‘Grindin,’” he said. “I was in a fucking U-Haul. I was in a U-Haul. Bro, this shit came on the radio, bro. … I was like, damn, I really gotta get my beat like that.”

Time stamps: 1:35:49, 1:37:20

At one point in his career, Game revealed, he believed Em was “better than” him.

“I like Eminem, he’s one of the fucking good MCs, great MCs. … I used to think Eminem was better than me,” Game said around the 1:35:49 mark. “He’s not. Ay, challenge it.”

From there, the discussion veered into talks of the Verzuz variety, with Game arguing he was instead making a broader point.

“Swizz [Beatz] and Timbaland know that it’s bigger than Verzuz,” he said around the 1:37:20 mark. I’m not saying I want smoke with Eminem, I’m saying I want smoke with Eminem, him, and him, whoever. … Again, I wasn’t on the Super Bowl because I’m not the safe choice.”

Time stamps: 3:57-5:45, 1:39:31, 2:06:24, 2:07:20, 2:09:13

Ye and Game have been in and out of headlines together in recent weeks thanks to their “Eazy” collab, which was given a moment to shine during the artist formerly known as Kanye West’s recent Donda 2 performance art event in Miami.

Game had nothing but praise for Ye in his Drink Champs interview, including addressing the possibility of his own upcoming album being released via the Stem Player device. In Game’s opinion, Ye also gets credit for inspiring his recent motivations, even more than Dr. Dre.

“I give this motivation to Ye because that n***a is, he’s my Dre right now,” Game said around the 1:39:31 mark. “It’s crazy that Ye did more for me in the last two weeks than Dre did for me my whole career. It’s what it is. And so that n***a got me inspired and Ye gonna tell me ‘You got me inspired.’ I watched Ye yesterday tell Elon Musk, like, ‘Game the one that got me inspired.’”

50 was quick to respond to these remarks in a tweet on Friday:

Elsewhere, Game said it was his idea to use the aforementioned Nick Knight image for his and Ye’s “Eazy” single.

As for new music in the future, Game isn’t ruling out a Stem Player release. The Stem Player, currently the exclusive home of Ye’s Donda 2, has received a new wave of attention in recent weeks amid ongoing criticism against Spotify and other streaming services over royalty rates. 

“We ain’t talked about that. … We gotta talk about it,” Game said around the 2:09:13 mark when asked about releasing his next album on the device and platform from Yeezy Tech and Kano Computing. “But yeah, I’m riding with my brother. If we dropping on Stem Player, we dropping on Stem Player. … Because what we have now, we got control. We got our narratives.”

Toward the top of the four-hour chat, including around the 3:57 mark, Game broke down his take on Ye’s current artistic process. And around five minutes in, he pinpointed the emotional core of Ye’s Donda and Donda 2 era pieces.

“If you did have a fan, it was your mama,” Game said of the impact a parent can have on an artist’s trajectory. “When I started off doing music, I was doing it for my family, for my mama. So let’s understand that aspect of what he did first, because it was for him and it was for his mama. Then after that, you appreciate the artist and the artistry. And then the music comes into play later. You know he’s gonna give you the music, so wait on it.”

Time stamp: 2:33:22

While Game and Meek previously had well-documented issues, those were brought to an end when the latter was released from prison in 2018.

“I love Philly, I love New York and all that, and I got love for Meek. But Meek called me on his first day out. … We talked for about an hour and he was like, ‘Yo, I’m coming to L.A. but I don’t wanna be beefing with [someone],’” Game recalled. He then gave some insight on where his and Meek’s relationship stands today.

Notably, Game suggested Meek is currently waiting to release music until he’s fully independent. As previously reported, Mill has recently expressed frustration over his present label situation.

“I told [him] ‘It’s good, I didn’t wanna see you in jail.’ … Now we in the best space ever,” Game said. “We talk about prison reform, and shit like that, what’s gonna be better for the youth and how to keep our masters and how to keep new artists from signing these slave deals. Meek is waiting to put his music out freely. I’ve been independent for 10 years.”

Time stamp: 15:30-17:35

As Game fans will recall, much was made some years back of the SEAL Team Six Member who fatally shot Osama bin Laden due to his reported choice of training soundtrack, i.e. Game’s Weezy-featuring track “Red Nation.”

Speaking with Drink Champs, Game reflected on the moment he learned of this detail, as well as the conversation he had with the SEAL Team Six Member in question.

“They put me on the phone with him and he was just saying how inspired he was. … Just saying how grateful he was for the music,” Game said. The moment he initially found out about the song’s involvement with the SEAL operation, Game recalled, he took a walk with a freshly rolled “smooth doobie” and played the shooting out in his head.

“Some cinematic shit,” Game remembered.

View this video on YouTube


Time stamps: 1:27:51-1:30:15

Closer to the 90-minute mark of the interview, Game said Los Angeles “claims lives,” ultimately mentioning the late Pop Smoke—who was fatally shot in 2020 in the Hollywood Hills area—as an example.

“And let’s call a spade a spade, L.A. claims lives. … Two of my favorite rappers died in L.A.,” Game told the hosts. “I talked to Pop Smoke three days before he died and asked him if he needed anything and he’s like, ‘I’m good, big bro.’”

When Game learned of Pop’s death, he “shed a tear” because what he’s trying to do is “stop that from happening.”

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