2011 BET Awards Cyphers

The BET Awards aired Tuesday night and the unanimous highlight was the Cypher, where rappers team up with a crew to showcase a verse within a group. 

The Cypher preserves the old school tradition of freestyling and rap battles, while also shedding light on some up and coming new rappers. I guess we're so used to seeing Drake, Yeezy, and Hova with their feet up in a private jet that we almost forgot the entire rap game started with crews battle rapping each other in back alleys not for a cheque, but just for some street cred (8 Mile, anyone?). 

Big names in the Cypher were Busta Rhymes, Eminem, Royce da 5'9", Chris Brown, and Estelle, with up-and-comers Kendrick Lamar, Nitty Scott, and Tyga. There's a whole slew more but to name them all would be more tongue-twisting than the raps themselves, so check the performances below to see which crew's rhymes brought it harder:

Shady 2.0 (Eminem, Joe Budden, Crooked I, Joell Ortiz, Royce Da 5'9")

Indie Meets Mainstream Cy (Big K.R.I.T., Tech N9ne,Machine Gun Kelly, Kendrick Lamar, B.o.B.)

Uncut Cypher (Busta Rhymes, Reek da Villain, 2 Chainz, Ludacris)

Survival of the Illest Cypher (Lady of Rage, Blind Fury, Dom Kennedy, Skillz)

Maybach Music Group Cypher (Rick Ross, Wale, Pill, Stalley, Meek Mill)

International Flow Cypher (Estelle, Soprano, Lecrae,Nitty Scott, MC)

Chris Brown & Friends Cypher (Chris Brown, Ace Hood, Kevin McCall, Tyga )

For a recap on the rest of the BET Awards, check Power98FM's photo gallery.