Illmaculate: The New West Coast Dynasty

With a new champion comes a whole new set of possibilities for the league.

For years now, the KOTD chain has remained in Canada, tucked away in the dark side of Nova Scotia (see what I did there?) — a place that many battle rap fans have likely never heard of. But regime change is upon us. The dust has settled, the judges have judged and Portland veteran Illmaculate has finally dethroned long-time KOTD champion Pat Stay. With the fall of KOTD’s Goliath, another American champion on the Canadian throne and an ongoing southward expansion, things are definitely going to be shaken up in the Toronto-based league.

With KOTD increasing its presence in the U.S. and its champion once more residing on the West Coast (Illmac is the third after The Saurus and Dizaster), this opens up the race for more emcees who were either unable or unwilling to cross the border for battles. This ripple effect could carry KOTD into a different but very exciting future.

Pat Stay's reign was something like a New York Yankees hot streak. One city was really, really, really happy about it and everyone else in the country was moving on to football. Ok, maybe that’s being harsh but many fans were ready for the title to change hands. It seemed like even Pat was ready to be rid of it. His enthusiasm for the chain wasn't strong to begin with and had seemingly been waning for some time, a complacency that Charron attacked in his title shot and that Illmac pointed out leading up to WD5 battle.

Photo by Zach Macphoto for KOTD.

On the flip side, the new champ has been more active for the last several years and has a reputation for bringing A1 bars every time he steps in the ring to prove he's the best. He's hungry and that hunger isn’t going anywhere. While Pat seemed content resting on his comfy Canadian throne for much of his reign, Illmac has been bodying opponents and putting on classics. He's out to expand the empire and that is exactly what the league could use.

There is a giant game of capture the flag going on right now between the major leagues as they expand across the U.S. and beyond. URL is pushing into The West and England. Don't Flop has touched down in Atlanta, Chicago, Philadelphia, Detroit and D.C. Meanwhile, KOTD has been in California for several years but has yet to have a title match go down there (mostly because the circumstances have never called for it). But Illmac as the champion could bring a new sense of purpose to that scene.

Photo by @NBDYNWHR.

Title shots on the West Coast could revitalize the quest for the chain, especially for fan favorites like Bigg K and Caustic who were previously out of the #1 contender conversation over border issues. Smart money would be on Rone as the next title contender after some hugely popular performances this year, but there's also a growing rivalry between Illmac and Shotty Horroh, with the two of them trading diss tracks recently.

And whether or not the title matches stay in Toronto, it seems highly unlikely that the chain will go back to living there anytime soon either. After Charron's loss to Pat Stay earlier this year, there really aren't any Canadians considered in the running for another title shot. 100 Bulletz? Sketch Menace? Bender? Kid Twist? None of them really have any #1 contender buzz and at this point it doesn’t feel like any of them could beat Illmac anyways. Until Canada finds a new hip-hop savior, KOTD is primed for a distinctly different chapter in the story of the chain.

That being said, Pat not having the chain could also be a good thing for Toronto, now that the league can set up the biggest possible opponents for him, rather than ones just interested in a title shot.

One thing remains true despite all of the uncertainty: beating Illmaculate will be no small feat.

Long live the new King Of The Dot.

Check all of our coverage of the battle, or see everything we've written on Illmaculate.

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