Top Moments From KOTD's "Blackout 5"

The highlights from KOTD's mega-event in Toronto.

Now that some time has passed since KOTD's "Blackout 5" in Toronto on Feb. 7-8, we're able to examine the event's place in history and how it has redefined the battle rap landscape. As with most large-scale events, the controversies dominated the conversation for the weeks after but now those storms have mostly passed, and we can focus on the moments that defined the event.

Performance Of The Night

Day 1 - Illmaculate


Illmac picked up arguably the most decisive victory of the weekend in his battle with an off-form DNA and established himself as a worthy contender to be the next to get a shot at the KOTD title.

Day 2 - Daylyt

Photo by Zach Macphoto for KOTD.

Daylyt repeatedly lit the building on fire with his performance against Madchild (including with the already infamous "I'm a little teapot" line), making up for his hated-on showing against Pat Stay at "Flatline 3."

Battle Of The Night

Day 1 - Eurgh vs. 24/7

Photo by Dan Gibs for KOTD.

24/7 made a seamless return to battle rap after years away from the scene as Eurgh upped his performance energy to new levels.

Day 2 - Dumbfoundead vs. Conceited

Photo by Zach Macphoto for KOTD.

There were so many excellent battles on Day 2 that it was hard to narrow it down to just one. Dumb vs. Con was the standout because of its significance as an authentic, entertaining, debatable and incredibly accessible battle. Expect this one to do massive numbers when the footage drops on YouTube.

Read our full review of the battle here.

Top Moments

Surprising surprises

Flyer by Famous Effects for KOTD.

The BO5 mystery match-ups were such a well-kept secret that no predictions, including the purported "leaked" card, were anywhere close to the real thing. Even the experts at only got 6 out of 15 right.

When Two Becomes Four

Photo by Zach Macphoto for KOTD.

One of the more predictable match-ups on the card was Shuffle-T vs. Kid Twist. It made the most sense since the two emcees mirror each other both stylistically and physically. Some observant fans had already guessed that Marlo, Shuffle's regular 2-on-2 partner, was involved in battle when he started showing up in interviews and photos in Toronto ahead of the event. But no one expected Knamelis to jump in and back Twist as his surprise doubles partner. Definitely a cool moment in an entertaining battle.


Photo by Zach Macphoto for KOTD.

Rone was a one-man media machine at BO5. The charismatic Philadelphia rapper stole the show (again) at the press conference, had one of the weekend's top performances in a barn-burner with Big T, and garnered rave reviews conducting interviews as a special correspondent for

The standout moment though? Probably this photo, which is nearing 150,000 likes on Drake's Instagram feed:

Drake In The Building

Photo by Chris Mitchell for

What a class act. Drake donated his time, his resources, his brand and his considerable social media sway to help his favorite league put on its biggest and best event. What's more, he did so as a fan of battle rap who just wanted to see KOTD and his home city of Toronto thrive, without attempting to steal the spotlight or shoehorn himself anywhere he didn't belong.

He was at the event from start to finish and even made headlines for skipping the Grammys to attend. The biggest moment was the stretch of time where both he and Murda Mook were prepping to battle each other. Obviously, it didn't happen (you would've read about it everywhere by now if it had), but from pretty much all accounts, it was close to going down. If KOTD is looking to top BO5, the Drake/Mook match-up would be one hell of a main event for "World Domination 5."

Listen to Mook tell the full story of how he almost battled Drake here.

Big T's Dancing

Rone vs. Big T was a surprisingly coherent style match-up with plenty of memorable moments in it. T's first, Rone's third, and obviously, the dancing.

Check out their post-battle interview here too:

Bender & Hollohan's Title-Match Cameos

Photo by Zach Macphoto for KOTD.

We've already written plenty about the controversies that went with the title match and we'll write tons more about the battle itself once the footage drops, so here let's focus on two hilarious moments you may not have heard about.

1. Bender stumbled over to Pat mid-battle and whispered something about acupuncture to him, not realizing every word was picked up by Pat's mic.

He explained what was going on to

"I had an inside joke with Pat about having a buddy that did acupuncture on the low, then I heard Corey's acupuncture line. Didn't realize I was speaking into his mic. He didn't catch what I said until he watched the PPV and then he just lost it. Haha I'm an idiot."

2. Hollohan wasn't allowed on stage for fear of a fight breaking out over a planned stunt, but he still attempted to execute his game-plan from the crowd. The way we heard it told, Hollohan jumped out of his seat from several rows back and yelled "YOU FUCKED UP THE LOYALTY!" but because Charron was freestyling the majority of his third round, he had abandoned the agreed-upon cue for the line, and so Hollohan jumped up at the wrong time. Fans around him told him to be quiet and sit down and to stop acting like a maniac. Apparently it also threw Charron off when he saw Hollohan do it.

You'd be hard pressed to script a better comedy of errors.

Bishop's Return

Photo by Zach Macphoto for KOTD.

Toronto hip-hop mainstay/KOTD host Bishop Brigante silenced the haters with a dominant modern-era debut over Arsonal. He was poised, polished and a definite contender for performance of the night on Day 1.

Watch our post-battle interview with Bishop here.

The Venue

Photo by Dan Gibs for KOTD.

Every moment that people were sitting comfortably and watching the battles was great, especially since unruly crowds were becoming the norm in Toronto before this event. The seated atmosphere kept fans attentive during the battles and relaxed between them.

Overall Diversity

Photo by Zach Macphoto for KOTD.

The card itself showed a range of talents and styles from around North America and the U.K., epitomized perfectly by one moment: Harlem legend and battle rap pillar Murda Mook, standing on a KOTD stage in Toronto, introducing Don't Flop owner Eurgh against Grind Time veteran 24/7. That's basically a battle rap grand slam.

The Shortest Brawl Ever

Photo by Zach Macphoto for KOTD.

Some dude walked on stage during Hitman Holla's opening round, yelled some shit and then got jumped by pretty much everyone who was within striking distance of him. Somehow, the battle was underway again within a few minutes. That this wasn't the biggest story of the weekend speaks to the quality of the event and the ability of Organik and the KOTD staff to keep things under control and moving along swiftly.

The Saurus' Surprise Appearance

Photo by Zach Macphoto for KOTD.

The original match-up was J-Pro against Rich Dolarz, who was the only rapper on the card unable to make it to the event. Luckily, he cancelled with enough notice that The Saurus was able to fill his shoes. The resulting battle, which kicked off Day 2, was the perfect sparring session between two competitive guys who were having a lot of fun and who brought the audience along with them. Even J-Pro's memory lapse was described by one staff member as "the best choke ever."

The Response To The PPV

Photo by Dan Gibs for KOTD.

I don't usually praise my own achievements on this site, but man, the response that Dirtbag Dan and I got for hosting the live pay-per-view was overwhelmingly positive.

I've even seen people looking for bootlegs of our banter.

Day 2 (after the many annoying livestream dropouts of Day 1) was a battle rap pay-per-view done right, with room for improvement still. You can watch it at a reduced rate here.

And if any other leagues are looking for an event analyst, don't hesitate to reach out.

Final Thoughts

Was this the best battle rap event of all time? It's certainly in the conversation. It had better production than "Battle Of The Bay 5" and way more quality content than the one-day "Summer Madness 2."

Ultimately though, the "best event ever" will be determined by its legacy. We still need to see how the BO5 footage is received by fans and how long its name rings out over time.


Finally, big shoutouts to Dan Gibs and Zach Macphoto for their amazing pictures. See the rest of Zach's event shots here and follow him on IG (@zach_macphoto) for more. Also check out Dan's Day 1 and Day 2 shots.

More On Blackout 5

Complete BO5 coverage
Press Conference Recap/Drake Interview
Day 1 Recap
Day 2 Recap
Pat Stay & Charron Recap Title Match
Organik's Full Recap

Were you there? What were your top moments? Let us know in the comment section below