LL Cool J had fights as a kid in Queens, and even on the set of a film. But the rap/Hollywood legend told Drink Champs co-hosts N.O.R.E and DJ EFN that he was “terrified” when he had to take on a would-be burglar in his Los Angeles home in 2012.

“Fighting for your life is not the same feeling as fighting in (other circumstances),” LL recalled. “I’m really scared, this is for keeps, I’m going to get it in, whatever it takes.”

Even five years after the incident, LL still remembers that night clearly. He gave N.O.R.E and DJ EFN the play-by-play.

“Drink Champs” | LL Cool J (Full Episode)

“It was one in the morning, and the alarm pad went off,” LL said. “You know how you have an alarm, and it’ll give you a minute to put your code in? I went to the keypad, and I’m looking at the keypad, like, family room? I’m thinking it’s my daughter sneaking in, coming in late.

“…When I was going towards the kitchen, he’s coming out of the kitchen, and we’re face to face. He’s got all black on, he’s got a big bag, the long Manson beard, boots,” he continued. “I’m terrified, it was freaky. We fought, he tried to rock for a minute.”

According to MTV reports from the incident, LL broke the intruder’s – then-56-year-old Jonathan Kirby – nose, jaw, and some of his ribs. LL himself didn’t have any injuries. But he said that he had to make a split-second decision.

“This is the part that’s not fun. There was a point when I had to decide whether he should stay alive,” he said. “I didn’t know if he had anyone else with him. I had him on the ground on his stomach, finished, but I had to make that decision because I didn’t know if he had someone upstairs.”

Watch LL Cool J’s interview on Drink Champs above to see him share new info about his beefs with Canibus and Kool Moe Dee, his on-set fight with Jamie Foxx, and more.