Crazy to think that long before Nick Cannon married Mariah Carey, he dated reality starlet Kim Kardashian ... and dumped her because of her sex tape with Ray J!

While appearing on The Howard Stern Show, Cannon revealed:

    "This was my issue. We talked about this tape…and she told me there was no tape. If she might have been honest with me I might have tried to hold her down and be like 'That was before me' because she is a great girl. She’s actually one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet. But the fact that she lied and told me that there was no tape?"

As for the tape's release, Mimi's hubby added, "And I still think she might have even had a part to play with [its release]."

Nick and Kim dated from September 2006 to January 2007.