Throughout his career, [artist id="1325"]DMX[/artist] has battled personal demons, rival rappers and label politics. His next fight, though, won't be anything like his previous challenges. And it's unclear whether that's a good thing or a bad thing.
The often-troubled rapper is scheduled to participate in an unregulated mixed martial arts fight on December 12 in Alabama's Birmingham Jefferson Convention Complex as part of the "Alabama Pride" event. X will actually be pitted against a member of his new management team, according to Hot 97 news guru Miss Info. The rapper's opponent, Eric Martinez, is an Arizona entrepreneur and a onetime MMA competitor with a single win under his belt. DMX has never appeared in a match of this kind before.
The puzzling move is the latest misstep in the rapper's once storied career that saw him become the second rapper to release two #1 albums in the same year. He was released from prison in May after spending the majority of 2008 in and out of court in Arizona and Florida on a number of charges, including fraud, drug possession and animal cruelty. He's since returned to work, appearing on the remix of former Ruff Ryders labelmate Jadakiss' "Who's Real."
Last week in New York, appearing at VH1's "Hip Hop Honors,", X said he intends to release two albums simultaneously soon. Back in January 2008, he told MTV News about his plans to release a traditional hip-hop album along with a gospel LP.
"I'm hungry, I'm grounded," X told MTV News on the red carpet. "I've always been grounded. But I'm hungrier. There's so much bullsh-- out there. I'm not gonna get into the names. You know who you are. There's so much bullsh-- out there. The streets won't let me forget that they need me and I need them."