Eminem and his manager hope to turn rap battles into the MMA fighting of music

Credit: Christopher Polk/Getty

The real Slim Shady is standing up to take rap battles to the big leagues.

Eminem and his manager, Paul Rosenberg, recently announced the creation of Total Slaughter, a competitive rap battle league. For the past decade, the pair have watched battle rapping balloon in popularity over YouTube, and hope to turn this success into a high-profile sport.

“What we look at this opportunity as, is a way to do for battle rapping what UFC did for MMA,” Rosenberg shared with Rolling Stone. “That’s really the model we’re basing it on.”

“I’m a passionate battle fan, so this is something I’ve always thought about doing,” added Eminem. “I came up battling at the same time I was making records and learning my way around the studio.”

On July 12, Total Slaughter will debut at New York City’s Hammerstein Ballroom. The event’s inaugural night will feature a rematch between legendary Harlem performers Murda Mook and Loaded Lux.

Another show slated for the summer promises to give newcomers a chance at serious stardom as well. Road to Total Slaughter, a four-part online reality series airing on WatchLOUD.com, will narrow down a group of talented hopefuls to two competitors, who will verbally duke it out on the Total Slaughter stage.

While Eminem is the name behind the project, fans shouldn’t expect Slim Shady to pop up behind the mic. The 41-year-old is said to be focusing on creating worthy combatants, not defeating them.

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