"They said 'No Jussie Smollett jokes' ... What a waste of light skin. Do you know what I could do with that light skin? That curly hair? My career would be out of here! I'd be running Hollywood," said Rock, who was on hand to present the award for Outstanding Comedy Series.
He continued: "What the hell was he thinking? You're 'Jessie' from now on. You don't get the 'u' no more. That 'u' was respect. You ain't getting no respect from me!"
Smollett was nominated -- but lost -- for best supporting actor in a television drama for his role as Jamal Lyon on the Fox series. He was edged out by "Grey's Anatomy" star Jesse Williams.
Smollett has been nominated for the award four years in a row and won in 2017.