Eminem announces competitive rap battle league, 'Total Slaughter'

First event in league will take place on July 12 at New York's Hammerstein Ballroom

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Eminem has announced that he is setting up a a competitive rap battle league called Total Slaughter.

The intention of Total Slaughter is to raise the profile of battle rapping, which helped Eminem get his break at the start of his career when he was living in Detroit. The first event will take place on July 12 at New York's Hammerstein Ballroom and will be streamed on hip-hop website WatchLOUD, in conjunction with Eminem's film company Shady Films.

Artists lined up to take part in the first battle include Eminem's Shady Records signing Joe Budden facing off against Hollow Da Don, as well as a rematch between Harlem's Murda Mook and Loaded Lux. The undercard for the event will also be decided by an online reality series Road to Total Slaughter.

"I'm a passionate battle fan, so this is something I've always thought about doing," Eminem told Rolling Stone. "I came up battling at the same time I was making records and learning my way around the studio. It's a little bit different in terms of the kinds of tools you need, but the competitiveness is the same. The times I didn't win gave me just as much light in the past as when I did. It's all about your performance."

Eminem's manager Pete Rosenberg says the rapper will not step into the ring himself. "I don't think at this point it would make any sense. They know everything about him. Everything," said Rosenberg. "So, he's kind of an easy target. Plus, lets be honest, you gotta be in shape for this. This isn't something that you just go do on a whim. You gotta be in shape, your brain's gotta be ready for it, you gotta be in that mode. And Marshall hasn't done stuff like that for a really long time."

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