D12’s Mr. Porter recently opened up about his relationship with Eminem and how initially difficult it was to become the rap star’s hype man following the passing of group member Proof in 20006.

Mr. Porter said becoming Em’s new hype man after Proof’s death was a direct request from Slim Shady.

“It was a tough thing in the beginning, just because that has always been [Proof’s position]. And when he asked me to do it, all I could think about was, ‘I can’t fill those shoes. I could never fill those shoes’. So I had to bring something different to the table. Whatever I could bring to the table. For him asking me to do that, I felt like it was a step for me. It was like him thinking and feeling I was ready to do something and he could depend on me.” (XXL Mag)

Despite the perceived pressure, Porter said he did not hesitate on taking the role.

“Nah, nah. Because Em is like my brother,” he added. “So it’s like, if my big brother was hurt and he couldn’t take care of my mother or something like that, I would have to do that, and he would expect that of me. And it was the same thing with Em. I didn’t think twice, because I wanna have his back like he always had my back. And I was like, Who else is gonna do it? It didn’t make sense any other kind of way. Me and him have been around each other for years, before all of the-where he is right now.” (XXL Mag)

In 2009, Em opened up about the impact Proof had on his career.

“Right now, my music would probably be the same[if Proof was still alive,” Em explained in an interview. “I think this is what Proof always wanted, was for me to go crazy again. My life would be different because I would still have him. Me and the guys, we got a bond, it’s special. It’s like, as far as the future of D12, we’re gonna be back in the studio soon.” (Rap City Special)

Proof was killed five years ago in a Detroit club shooting.

D12 rapper and longtime friend of Eminem, Proof, was shot and killed this morning at a Detroit club called 3C, located on the city’s famed Eight Mile. Proof, born Deshaun Holton, was announced dead on arrival at Conner Creek Medical Center just after 5 a.m. He was thirty-two years old. Police were called to the scene in early this morning after reports of gunfire and fighting at the venue, which was operating illegally after-hours. Another unidentified, thirty-five-year-old man was also shot, and is listed in critical condition. An investigation into the incident is underway. (Rolling Stone)

Check out a past D12 interview below: