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Bone Thugs-N-Harmony & Three 6 Mafia Verzuz Showdown Nearly Came to Blows, But Special Guests Saved the Day

Billboard logo Billboard 12/3/2021 Andrew Unterberger

The Midwest took on the South when legendary rap groups Three 6 Mafia and Bone Thugs-N- Harmony faced off in the latest Verzuz match-up. The heated showdown took place on Thursday (Dec. 2) at the Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles, California, in front of a sold-out audience.

Fat Joe played host yet again with a coin toss to determine who would go last, which Bone Thugs won — but before either crew could get a song off, the verbal assaults were already being thrown from each corner. Three 6 Mafia bust out the gate with their 2000 classic “Who Run It,” but Bone Thugs-N-Harmony responded the 1994 hit “No Surrender,” which got the crowd off their feet.

However, as things were beginning to pick up steam, a tense situation nearly derailed the whole Verzuz. After performing “Buddah Lovaz,” Bizzy Bone called Three 6 Mafia out for disrespecting him while singing his verse on the track.

“Hey yo hey yo before we even get started, you ugly muthaf–kas ain’t finna to be mocking me while I’m on muthaf–kin’ stage,” Bizzy said. “OK? Straight the f–k up.”

Juicy J responded, telling Bizzy, “suck my d–k,” and it didn’t take long before the Bone Thugs member threw a water bottle that nearly caused the two crews to come to blows. Security halted Verzuz as they worked on maintaining order, and things got back in motion after a few short minutes.

Three 6 Mafia and Bone Thugs returned with “Azz & Ti–ies” and “Days Of Our Livez,” respectively, before Layzie Bone took a second to announce that both groups were “dope.” The official restart happened when Bizzy Bone came back on stage to give Juicy J a pound.

“I wanna apologize to everybody the f–k out there — on both sides,” Bizzy said. “I’m not trying to f–k this shit up. Pardon me. Let’s keep the muthaf–kin’ party going.”

The brief intermission led to an even more exciting second half, which saw appearances from several star guests. Chamillionaire arrived on stage to perform his Grammy Award-winning hit “Ridin'” with Krayzie Bone, and Three 6 Mafia matched that energy with a surprise appearance by Lil Wayne for his feature on Juicy J’s “Bandz a Make Her Dance.”

Before the crowd could gather themselves, Bone Thugs brought out Lil Jon and Satasha Williams for their respective tracks “I Don’t Give A” and “Thuggish Ruggish Bone.” But Three 6 Mafia turned the notch to another level by bringing out a slew of guests that propelled them ahead of Bone Thugs.

Project Pat ran through his feature on Drake’s Certified Lover Boy hit “Knife Talk,” featuring 21 Savage, and his own hit “Chickenhead” — before Duke Deuce came out to tear the floor up with his slick dance moves to “Crunk Ain’t Dead.” Triple 6 kept their foot on the pedal by bringing out Wiz Khalifa (“Errday”), and Young Buck and 8Ball & MJG (“Stay Fly”) — but their last guest blew the top off the Hollywood Palladium.

That most unexpected guest came in the form of their movie star collaborator on Oscar-winning hit “It’s Hard Out Here For a Pimp,” Terrance Howard. The Hustle & Flow star arrived on stage with a smooth walk dressed in a velour outfit and a cream fedora, rapping his show-stealing verse on the record. The crowd erupted as Howard blazed through the song, rapping as if he was taking on the Cleveland, Ohio rap group by his lonesome.

The night came to a close when Bone Thugs-N-Harmony embraced Three 6 Mafia and asked them to do a joint performance of their timeless 1996 record “The Crossroads.” To bring the moment home, Bone Thugs and Triple 6 memorialized several late hip-hop figures, including Eazy-E, The Notorious B.I.G., 2Pac, Nipsey Hussle, and the recently killed Young Dolph, on the giant screen behind them.

After the two groups stayed a few minutes longer to freestyle alongside Lil Flip and Young Buck, people were finally on their way home from yet another entertaining Verzuz battle.

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