"Nas is wearing the street battle crown," said New York hip-hop DJ Funkmaster Flex. "And that crown gets decided on mixtapes and radio shows and night clubs, and Nas did definitely win that battle lyrically."
"It's just a plain simple attack," mixtape king DJ Kay Slay said. "I was a Mike Tyson fan. Buster Douglas got in the ring, [and] Buster Douglas beat Tyson. Buster Douglas was the champion. Right now, as it stands, it doesn't matter how much you've done and how much you've progressed, if you get into a battle and you lose, the next person is the reigning champ. At this present time, Nas is the champ.
"Anyone that disputes that, they are taking sides, because Nas has the last hottest record going at his nemesis. So Nas is on top right now. Until Jay-Z does a record better than 'Ether' it will remain that way."
"I don't consider it a loss," Jay's longtime business partner Damon Dash said. "It was a freestyle against a song. I feel if we're gonna battle we should keep it in the street. Don't put it on radio. It commercializes it. Then you have too many people judging it. ... When you're on top for a long period of time, they're probably gonna go with the person who hasn't been on top for a long period of time. 'Super Ugly' was just a freestyle that was meant for mixtapes, but it got put on such a bigger venue, it was considered a song."
The Roc-A-Fella mogul implied that Jay may be cooking up another comeback on either his upcoming Best of Both Worlds duet album with R. Kelly or the sequel to The Blueprint.
"If anybody knows Jay-Z, they know what he's gonna do," Dash said. "He'll never leave any questions unanswered. That's all I could say."
Jay himself hasn't had too much to say since "Super Ugly" hit the air. He declined to comment on the latest round of verbal jabs. In August, however, he was very talkative about the ensuing battle.
"Nas is definitely going to bring out the best of me," Jay said. "He's gonna put me at the top of my game. I hope I do the same for him. It's like playing basketball with a guy. It's just verbal sparring no one's fighting, it's just records."
Hold your position. That was the unanimous mantra in the hip-hop community last year. It seemed like every MC had something to say about the other, whether it was direct name-calling or no-brainer indirect references. Beanie Sigel and his group State Property are still going at it with the LOX, DMX spit venom on an unknown foe, and Jay-Z and Mobb Deep went back and forth. But no beef stood out more than the rivalry between Nas and Jay-Z.
For years the two have been heralded as being the most on point with their lyrics, and when Notorious B.I.G. passed away in 1997, everyone placed them as the heirs to the throne ("Who's the best MCs? Biggie, Jay-Z and Nas," Jigga rhymed in 1997's "Where I'm From").