Why Kanye West and Tristan Thompson's Friendship Makes Perfect Sense

Just like the rest of the Kardashians, Kanye West isn't one to shun someone from the family fold, even after a breakup—including when it's his own.

By Natalie Finn Mar 13, 2022 2:00 PMTags
Watch: Tristan & True Thompson Share ADORABLE Father-Daughter Moment

Not surprisingly, Kanye West is still in Tristan Thompson's court.

Kim Kardashian's former husband reunited with Khloe Kardashian's ex for dinner in Miami Beach on March 1, where, according to a local source, the atmosphere was "light and fun" for the pair (and the several women who joined them at their table).

In which case, we can guess which topics they steered clear of.

Their meet-up at The Setai hotel a night after Tristan's latest team, the Chicago Bulls, played the Miami Heat came amid a period of relative quiet for the NBA player—minus the taunting "Khloe" chants when he approached the free-throw line—in the wake of news he had become a father for the third time. In January, after paternity was confirmed, he publicly apologized to Khloe—who broke up with him last summer—for the "heartache and humiliation" he'd caused her over the years.

Khloe Kardashian & True Thompson's Cutest Photos

Alternately, the dinner happened amid a period of upheaval for Kanye, who became legally single the following day and then released a video for his and The Game's track "Eazy" that depicted a claymation version of Kim's boyfriend, Pete Davidson, being tied up and buried alive.

"Art is therapy" and "protected as freedom of speech," Kanye wrote March 6 in a since-deleted post, defending his vision from the inevitable criticism that he'd crossed a line. Though he's perennially posting-and-deleting, a longtime social media habit for the Grammy winner, still remaining on his Instagram at the moment are poetic works titled "Divorce" and "Dead," which seemingly describe the aftermath of not just what has transpired between him and Kim, but between him and the whole world. (On Feb. 15, he apologized for posts that "came off as harassing Kim.")

Getty Images; E! Illustration

However, you wouldn't have known Kanye was harboring such hard feelings if you saw him at dinner the other night—or on any of his dates in recent months, including with now-just-a-friend Julia Fox and behavioral health entrepreneur and model Chaney Jones.

"Kanye was smiling and holding court at the table," the Miami source told E! News. "He and Tristan seemed like good friends having a fun night out. They were laughing and smiling together and seem to be on great terms."

Ultimately, the source added, "They stayed past midnight eating, drinking and sharing stories" before giving each other a hug and going their separate ways.

A History of Khloe Kardashian and Tristan Thompson's Relationship

After Kim filed for divorce last February following months of reports that she and Kanye were having problems, all seemed amicable enough at first. She requested joint physical and legal custody of the kids and the pair made a point of going on outings together with daughters North, 8, and Chicago, 4, and sons Saint, 6, and Psalm, 2, while figuring out their custody plan.

In June, Kim included Kanye (as well as Tristan and Kourtney Kardashian's ex Scott Disick) in her Father's Day tribute to "all the amazing dads" in their family, and they were spotted on a lunch date in August.

But the tenor of their split seemingly took a turn after Kim addressed their divorce while hosting Saturday Night Live in October and subsequently started dating Pete.

Inside Kim Kardashian and Pete Davidson's Surprisingly Normal Romance

"God saved me from that crash just so I can beat Pete Davidson's ass (who?")," Kanye rapped in "Eazy," which dropped in January. The questionable companion video concludes with the message, "EVERYONE LIVED HAPPILY EVER AFTER / EXCEPT SKETE YOU KNOW WHO / JK HE'S FINE," with "Skete," his derogatory nickname for the SNL star, crossed out.

Not quite the tone of the lyric Kanye composed about Tristan back in 2018 on "All Mine" off of his album Ye—"All these thots on Christian Mingle / Almost what got Tristan single / If you don't ball like him or Kobe / Guarantee that bitch gon' leave you."

A strangely supportive bit of scolding in response to cheating allegations against the basketball player that broke days before his daughter with Khloe, True Thompson, was born April 12, 2018.

Khloe weighed in with her review of the album: three fire emojis.


Still a huge fan, even after her sister decided to divorce him, Khloe wished Kanye a happy 44th birthday last June 8 with a throwback shot of a couple's vacation the four of them took, calling him her "brother for life." (She ended her romantic relationship with Tristan in the wake of more cheating rumors not long after.)

Kendall Jenner was also getting along fine with her ex-brother-in-law as recently as a month ago, chatting with both Kanye and Travis Scott, who welcomed his second child with on-again partner Kylie Jenner on Feb. 2, at a Sunny Vodka party at The NICE Guy in West Hollywood. 

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So, Kanye seemed fated to secure the same forever-family status enjoyed by Scott and Tristan, despite their numerous foibles. "Like one of my kids," matriarch Kris Jenner has called Scott, while Tristan scored "likes" from Kris and her boyfriend Corey Gamble when he called Khloe "an amazing partner, mommy and best friend but also being the kindest, caring and most loving human being I've ever met" on her June 27 birthday, post-split. (Corey also showed up for a Kings-Lakers game at Crypto.com Arena in January when Tristan was still playing for Sacramento.)

And back in, or at least adjacent to, the fold is likely where Kanye—as Kim's co-parent and father to four of Kris' 11 grandchildren—will end up, his latest spurt of publicly aired grievances notwithstanding.

"They're all trying to keep the peace with Kanye, but everyone is upset for Kim," a Kardashian source tells E! News of where the family stands with the artist, whose career is the subject of the new Netflix docuseries Jeen-yus. "It's been very stressful."

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Moreover, the source adds, "Khloe is very close to Kim and her kids and she's doing her best to support and protect them." At the same time, "she's cordial to Kanye" as the father of Kim's children.

But you can register him hanging out with Tristan as a non-event for Khloe.

As far as she's concerned, "What Tristan does with Kanye is his business," the family source says. "Khloe wants to support Kim first and foremost, however she needs."


Khloe told Variety in an interview ahead of the premiere of The Kardashians on Hulu that she wished she didn't have to discuss what happened with Tristan ever again, as it's "not a fun thing to talk about," but she gets that he's a part of her story and that will be reflected on the new show.

A source close to Khloe told E! News last June that the Good American co-founder had indicated she was done for good with the athlete, having taken him back in the past after other instances in which he'd abused her trust. But she put up a brave front for True, never wanting to disrupt the child's bond with her father.

"No matter what Khloe and Tristan are going through or the status of their relationship," another source close to the situation added, "it has never affected True's relationship with Tristan or the time she gets with him."

Christopher Polk/E! Entertainment/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

And it's not as if the ever-stoic Kardashians are unfamiliar with the concept of friendly exes. Or at least the exes being friendly with each other. (Less so the exes themselves feuding, but that's happened, too.)

Lamar Odom—technically still Khloe's husband at the time, though mainly because divorce proceedings were on hold in the wake of his near-fatal 2015 overdose—was a VIP along with the rest of the family at the Yeezy Season 3 runway show in February 2016.

Scott was a welcome guest at the all-star listening party for Ye in Jackson Hole, Wyo., in 2018. And French Montana, whom Khloe dated in 2014, was just at the intimate Feb. 7 listening party for Donda 2 at Nobu in Malibu, as well as the Feb. 22 listening event at Miami's LoanDepot Park.

Kylie's ex Tyga, a longtime Kanye friend and sometimes collaborator, was also in the rapper's orbit at the Super Bowl Feb. 13, Kanye making sure to show off the vantage point from where he was sitting with Saint and North at L.A.'s SoFi Stadium.

Hell, Kanye's even been out in groups with Pete—albeit three years ago, long before he found a reason to declare social media war on the 28-year-old comedian.

Khloe Kardashian's Jaw-Dropping Pantry

Though it's unclear whether Kanye has finally put his technically one-sided feud behind him with the release of the "Eazy" video, a source close to him called Kanye's serial dating "a distraction" from his disappointment over no longer being with Kim as she pressed ahead with the paperwork to make their split official. 

A Kim insider told E! News after a judge declared her legally single again on March 2 that she and Kanye "have many upcoming issues to work out" but she was "hopeful they can get through it for the sake of the kids."

His lawyer, Samantha Spector, explained to E! News afterward that her client's previous objections had been procedural, and that he was "always in support of the divorce" so long as Kim "satisfied the procedural requirements to protect rights under the California law." Kanye would be "focusing his entire attention to their children," Spector added.

Kim Kardashian & Pete Davidson's L.A. Outing With Khloe

Which is good, because Kim is enjoying what she's got going with Pete, and her family is excited for her. "They love this new relationship for Kim and the way he treats her," a source shared with E! News last month, adding, "They just want Kim to be happy and he has made her very happy."

And now, "Kim is trying to move on with her life," the aforementioned Kardashian source says. "Having to deal with Kanye has been a lot to endure. She knew it was going to be difficult."

But, the insider adds, "Her sisters have rallied around her and the kids. They are trying to keep everything light and fun and just keep doing what they're doing."

Which includes not caring who's having dinner with whom on any given night.