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‘It Was a Little Awkward’: Ashanti Shares What Nelly Said to Her at Fat Joe and Ja Rule’s ‘Verzuz,’ Fans React

Ashanti said her run-in with her ex Nelly during Fat Joe and Ja Rule’s “Verzuz” battle on Saturday, Sept. 14, was a “little awkward.” Fans believe the rapper wants that old thing back after noticeably approaching Ashanti with a hug and smile while on stage at the Hulu Theatre in Madison Square Garden.

Ashanti opened up about their brief encounter during an interview on “The Angie Martinez Show on Monday, Nov. 15. While many thought Nelly whispered sweet nothings in her ear, the 40-year-old admitted her ex never said a word when they hugged.

Ashanti celebrates her birthday. @ashanti/Instagram

“You know what, the crazy part is he didn’t say anything,” she said. “First of all, I didn’t know he was going to be there. I told Joe, like ‘Joe, why you ain’t tell me he was gonna’ be there?’”

Using her best Fat Joe voice impression, Ashanti continued, “He was like, ‘Sis, I know, it’s terrible.’ He was like, ‘I couldn’t risk you not coming if you knew he was going to be there.’”

“It was very unexpected. I hadn’t seen him in like six years or more. Spoken or seen,” she said. “It was a little awkward.”

After clips from Ashanti’s interview circulated online, many flooded The Shade Room’s Instagram page with comments about Nelly wanting that old thing back.

“That man wanted a hug so bad,” wrote one person, while a second said, “Nelly couldn’t wait. Boy, I swear I saw him skip a little.”

A third person said, “I’m talking about walked all the way over deaaaaa,” while another wrote, “[Nelly] said screw Fat Joe and Ja Rule performance. Move out my way lol.”

Ashanti and Nelly dated for nine years before ending their relationship in 2012. Yet, many wanted the former couple to get back together after that September night, which came nearly a month after reports Nelly and his longtime girlfriend Shantel Jackson had split.

“One thing about Nelly he gone fumble a beautiful woman… hate that for him,” wrote one person. Someone else quipped, “Ashanti is unproblematic, unfazed and unbothered,” and brought up her new relationship.

“And before y’all start SHE WAS ASKED!! Ashanti been living her life. Don’t make it like she’s stunting that man,” another of her defenders wrote.

Here are screenshots from the night of the epic Verzuz battle between Fat Joe and Ja Rule, joined by Nelly and Ashanti.

During the interview, Ashanti also confirmed that she was in a new relationship with someone people “might” know. “It’s a situation. I’m good, we’re good. [I’m] definitely keeping it low and private,” she said.

The “Foolish” singer first mentioned her new relationship during Fat Joe’s Verzuz recap on Instagram Live with Ja Rule and Terror Squad member Remy Ma.

Meanwhile, Nelly has kept quiet since ending an almost seven-year relationship with TV. personality Shantel Jackson. After the news broke in August, the rapper confirmed with The Shade Room that their relationship ended two years ago.

“Well actually just 5 years, ended 2019 haven’t been together for the past 2,” Nelly wrote in a comment. “Ok now y’all know..!! #FACTS.”

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