Times Nick Cannon Was Brutally Honest About Diddy

The following article includes allegations of domestic abuse.

Diddy's celebrity friendships were thrust under the microscope in the wake of the raids on the rapper's homes and Cassie's explosive lawsuit accusing him of rape and assault. "The Masked Singer" host Nick Cannon is among the stars who have found themselves facing questions about Diddy's serious legal issues.

In 2022, Cannon told HipHopDX that the Bad Boy producer was someone he looked up to. "My dream was to be the next Jermaine Dupri or the next P. Diddy when I was a kid," he said. Instead of becoming a music mogul, Cannon became a television fixture. However, the "All That" alum still got to flex his freestyle muscle while hosting the improv comedy show "Wild 'n Out," a gig that he almost lost for good in 2020. After Cannon made antisemitic comments that got him temporarily fired from the show by ViacomCBS, Diddy came to his defense and offered Cannon a job at his former cable network Revolt. "We got your back and love you and what you have done for the culture. We are for our people first!!! For us! By US! Let's go!!!" Diddy wrote in a since-deleted tweet (via Billboard).

During a 2023 episode of Cannon's podcast "2 Hate or Not 2 Hate," journalist Stephen A. Smith revealed that he defended Cannon on his own show after Cannon's firing because Diddy had reached out to him. "He was like, 'Nick's my brother. He's good people,' Smith recalled. But Cannon's feelings about Diddy are a bit more complicated.

Nick Cannon addressed the rumors about Diddy and Lori Harvey

In a 2019 appearance on "Vlad TV," Nick Cannon weighed in on rumors that Diddy was dating Steve Harvey's daughter, Lori Harvey. Speaking on the 27-year age gap between the rapper and the model, Cannon said, "I wouldn't have a problem with that, but I'd be heartbroken if that was my daughter." He added, "I would feel like I failed as a father if I'm sitting across from the table with a dude the same age as me." So, he wasn't willing to go to bat for Diddy during that particular interview — instead, he seemed to throw shade at Steve. However, the comedian can rest easy knowing that he didn't actually meet one of Cannon's criteria for being a bad dad. In a 2023 E! News interview, Lori Harvey addressed the rumors that she dated Diddy and his son Justin Combs. "I've heard I dated a father and son before. Absolutely not true," she said (via BET).

Cannon showed Diddy's family some love when he invited the "Bad Boy for Life" rapper's three sons to appear on "Wild 'n Out" in 2018. During the "Wildstyle" segment of the show, Cannon admitted that he finds much younger women appealing. "Y'all think this is the Bad Boy stage. It's all good, because I'm still smashing chicks your age," he rapped. Cannon then roasted King Combs by asking him, "Wait, you are legal, right? You over 18?"

Nick Cannon couldn't take a hard stance about Cassie's allegations

After Cassie filed her lawsuit against Diddy, but before his properties were raided as part of an investigation into alleged sex trafficking, Nick Cannon was asked to weigh in on the situation when he appeared on "Way Up With Angela Yee" in December 2023. He wasn't yet ready to condemn Diddy and explained that he found it hard to wrap his head around the idea that someone he cared about had done something so heinous. He also pointed out that others experience the same issue when they learn scandalous details about celebrities they look up to, citing Billy Cosby and R. Kelly as similar examples. "When you think about Diddy, think about all that Diddy has done for the culture," Cannon said.

Cannon also pointed out that he knows both parties involved in this instance, which makes it even more difficult for him to reconcile the man he knows with the allegations against him. "It's like a family member," he said. "When you hear something happen, [it's] like, 'Damn, I don't agree with the behavior but I care for the person.'" He also wasn't ready to pass judgment on Diddy at the time, suggesting that there wasn't enough information available for him to do so. "We don't know everything. When it's revealed, it'll be revealed," he continued. Five months later, CNN released a video of Diddy throwing Cassie to the floor, kicking her, and dragging her down a hotel hallway.

Diddy's past support put Nick Cannon in an awkward position

In a March 2024 episode of his "Counsel Culture" podcast, Nick Cannon told his guest Iyanla Vanzant that it had been difficult for him to discuss Cassie's allegations against Diddy on "Way Up With Angela Yee." While Cannon acknowledged that Cassie was a victim, he said of Diddy, "I don't know how to feel about that." Cannon also shared one reason in particular why he found it so hard to consider that his friend might not be who he believed him to be: He was a beneficiary of Diddy's support during his antisemitism scandal. Cannon pointed out that few others were willing to defend him at the time. When Diddy was faced with his own scandal, Cannon said that he had to ask himself, "What do I owe?"

Cannon admitted that his first instinct was to side with Diddy. "As a friend and as a brother, I want to defend," he said. Vanzant, who is a life coach, told Cannon that he doesn't work for Diddy and he isn't obligated to weigh in on the situation. Her advice to him was to take the "no comment" approach when asked about it in the future. As of this writing, Cannon has not shared his thoughts about the disturbing video of Diddy assaulting Cassie.

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.