See your ear is sharp. I definitely agree with you. The first ones were better. Yes I know all these guys. The first YouTube link (already taken down) and the Souncloud were from 2 seperate guys, you can say we're best buddies. The last post was from another friend I hangout with.
Check out how insane Waajeed flipped Elzhi. Then go and listen to Chino XL - Can Be (produced by Apollo Brown). Very simple sampling. That's my problem with him a lot of times. He's a very poor sampler, but he does use very good samples. A lot, really a lot of his beats were already sampled and they sound better as well. I do respect him for doing it actually, he's one of the few with the 90s boom bap sound