Raekwon's status as one of hip-hop's elite lyricists was cemented with his seminal 1995, debut Only Built 4 Cuban Linx ....
Fourteen years later, the legendary rapper released the sequel, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx ... Pt. II. The critically acclaimed effort earned the Chef recognition from a new generation of fans, and he landed at #10 on the 2009 edition of MTV's Hottest MCs in the Game.
The 2010 list will be revealed beginning October 18, and experienced artists like Big Boi and Bun B are angling for a position on it, as are upstarts like Waka Flocka Flame and Nicki Minaj.
Raekwon is rooting for the veterans to make the cut.
"All of them are winners to me, honestly," he told MTV News. "I can't say who should get it and who shouldn't, because [Big Boi and Bun B] are both superstars to me. Whoever gets it, they deserve it."
The Wu-Tang MC said it's up to the vets to keep pushing forward if they expect to receive the same nods their younger contemporaries earn.
"I think it's all in the mind," he explained. "If you're somebody that really paved the way in the game, it's all on you. And that's something that I had to [realize] at the end of the day. It's like, I just want people to know I still love this. I'm in love with this.'
It's like being with a woman that you care about, that you really love — no matter how far you're away from her, you still love her.
"If you say that you can do something and you know that people know you're capable of doing it, then do it to your best ability," Raekwon added. "Do it 'till the wheels falls off."
Come back to MTVNews.com next Monday, October 18, when we'll begin revealing the Hottest MCs in the Game of 2010. And until then, talk about your picks in the comments below.