Last month, Soulja Boy and Chris Brown hurled insults and threats to each other on social media. The heated exchange resulted in Brown challenging Soulja Boy to a boxing match, which the “Crank Dat” rapper accepted. Since then, the highly-publicized fight has even more star power attached with the likes of boxing champs Floyd Mayweather, Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield and rapper 50 Cent have thrown their hats into the ring to help orchestrate the match.
While Mayweather initially signed on to train Soulja Boy, the rapper swapped him for Holyfield. “Once I saw that Mike Tyson was training Chris, the promotion company thought it would be better if we just did it with me and Holyfield,” he tells Billboard. Mayweather’s busy schedule also prevented him from taking on trainer duties but Soulja has no ill-will.
“Floyd is my big bro. I know that Floyd was just busy with a lot of things. He was doing a lot. I just wanted somebody to know that I’m serious,” explains Soulja Boy. “I’m training everyday until the fight. I know that Floyd is not going to be able to be there with me every single day, as much as I need him, but with Holyfield, we can make it happen.”
Soulja’s decision to enlist Holyfield as his trainer also stems from the boxer’s history with Chris Brown’s mentor, Mike Tyson. In 1997, Tyson and Holyfield fought for the WBA Heavyweight Championship. In the third round of that fight, Tyson bit Holyfield’s ear, abruptly ending the match. “Everybody knows that Mike Tyson bit off Holyfield’s ear back when they had that fight when I was young, like a young kid. It just made sense [to have him train me for this match].”
50 Cent, who as served as a promoter and matchmaker of sorts, tapped Tyson to serve as Brown’s trainer after Soulja Boy recruited Mayweather. Tyson obliged to help Brown and even made a diss record against Soulja Boy titled “If You Show Up.”
“It was shocking. It was confusing. It was hilarious,” says Soulja Boy regarding Tyson’s diss. “I don’t remember Mike Tyson being a rapper at all. I just remember him boxing. I don’t ever think he sung before.” The rapper then burst into laughter after explaining why he was more amused than upset at Tyson’s attempt to bash him. “It was entertaining. I respect Mike Tyson. I grew up watching him fight. He’s definitely a historical boxer — a legend.”
As for Soulja’s opponent, Chris Brown, he considered the possibility of collaborating with the singer only after the two settle their beef in the ring. It would mark their second track together after Brown nabbed Soulja Boy for their track “Bad” from his 2011 In My Zone mixtape.
“It’s not a problem to me. He was mad. I wasn’t mad. I was never mad,” said Soulja Boy. “You gotta ask him that, but if it was up to me, after I knock him out or after we fight, we can shake hands and be cool after that. We’ll have our issues out the way. If he wants to make a song, we can make a song.”
According to Soulja Boy, Brown once asked him to perform for free during a tour-stop in Atlanta. Soulja performed and has since asked Brown to collaborate with him on records, but the singer declined on his requests.
“He came up to me and asked me to [record “Bad”]. He came to Atlanta and asked me, ‘Soulja, will you come out and do my concert for free?’ I didn’t charge him. This was after the Rihanna incident. I was like, ‘Cool. Ok. Got you,'” he recalled. “I came up there and performed for him free on his tour. He came to L.A., I did the track with him for free. He put the song out, but I never got no Chris Brown feature when I had “Kiss Me Thru the Phone.” I wanted for [him] to sing on the track and [he] said no. I had more records and more records, [he] said no.” Soulja Boy continued, directing his message toward Brown, “So, cool, you called me and I did the song. You put it on your mixtape and you put it out. When you got back poppin’, you forgot about the people who helped you when you needed it.”
He adds, “Now it’s like, I don’t care to make no music with him. I got records with Drake. I got records with people that I wanted to work with, which was Gucci Mane, and Nicki Minaj. It’s whatever. If he wants to do a song, we can do one. If we don’t ever do a song again for rest of my life, cool. We’ve been there, done that.”
Despite having beef with Brown, Soulja says that he has no issues with 50 Cent either. While going back and forth with Brown, 50 Cent jumped in the feud and sided with the singer. He also claimed that Soulja Boy’s house was burglarized, which vexed the “We Made It” hitmaker. Soulja Boy later dissed 50 and Brown on the track “Hit Them With the Draco.”
“My whole thing with the 50 Cent thing is I respect 50 Cent. I look at him like a big brother,” he said. “I never had no problems with 50 Cent. I don’t think I have any problems with him now. I haven’t had problems with 50 until this fight came. At first, I thought he was just promoting the fight. Then, when he started talking reckless, I was like, ‘Is he trying to diss me?’ Now, all I can say is that I have nothing but respect for 50. I look at him like a big bro.”
While Soulja Boy couldn’t comment on the date nor location for his matchup with Brown, reportedly slated for March, he’s ready to put on the gloves.