Nicki Minaj's Lil' Kim-Inspired Style Is True 'Homage,' Lil' Cease Says

'I'm sure she's got some things from Kim, but Nicki's setting her own lane,' Cease says of the female MCs' rivalry.

Lil' Cease thinks nothing's wrong with one MC paying homage to another MC.

"All of us had an influence in the game," [artist id="509049"]Cease[/artist] said when he visited MTV News earlier this week. "We all came up listening to somebody, so it's not bad to say it."

And Cease is like most hip-hop fans: He's been keeping an eye on the unfolding Lil' Kim/ Nicki Minaj controversy. The Queen Bee has come out swinging, claiming the voluptuous Young Money Barbie bit her fashion style without paying homage. Kim also accused Minaj of sneak-dissing on songs like the Diddy-Dirty Money "Hello, Good Morning" remix, taking exception to the line "Did I kill the Queen?"

"When I heard about that, I didn't have no real reaction to it," Cease said of the flap. "At the end of the day, it's a real competitive sport in hip-hop. Kim is one of them people. No matter how you look at her, as an icon or whatever, she's definitely [an icon]. But she's also an MC. She feels like she still maintains that [top] spot. She still feels like she holds that spot. You can't knock her for that. But the paying homage thing, when I seen Nicki Minaj with the green hair, when I seen her do similar pictures that Kim has done — I look at that as paying homage. I saw other things where Nicki did pay homage; she said some [complimentary] things about Lil' Kim.

"But we don't know what's going on," Cease added. "We don't read between the lines like MCs do. Kim probably sees or hears things none of us probably sees or hears. She's just making her judgment from what she's seeing. We can't knock her for that. At the end of the day, Nicki is Nicki. She's building her own lane. She's doing what she's gotta do. She's hot, she's sexy. I'm sure she's got some things from Kim, but [Nicki's] setting her own lane ... But Kim's got a right to her opinion, she's got a right to say how she feel. I'm used to Kim being that way. She's very aggressive. If she feels like she ain't getting the proper respect, she's gonna speak her mind."

In the past few weeks, Kim has spoken out often about Minaj, while Nicki has remained silent. But Diddy, a host of female MCs and Drake have weighed in on the feud. On Tuesday morning, Drake told Houston radio station 97.9 the Box that he had nothing to say in response to Lil' Kim calling him a "punk" in an interview with The Brooklyn MC was irate after Drake spoke out, during a concert, against her jabs at Nicki.

"Nicki's got records climbing the charts," Drake said Tuesday, as he celebrated his debut album's official release. "Today, Thank Me Later is out. It's just about relevant people today."

Do you agree with Cease? Has Nicki Minaj paid homage to Kim by sampling some of her looks? Tell us what you think in the comments!