“She get d**k from a player off the New York Knicks
N***a tricked ridiculous, the shit was plush
She’s stressin’ me to f**k, like she was in a rush
We f**ked in his bed, quite dangerous
I’m in his ass while he playin’ against the Utah Jazz”
Little did anyone know when the late great Christopher Wallace aka the Notorious BIG released his much anticipated follow up album Life After Death in March of 1997 (just a few short weeks after the rapper’s own death), that track number 12 was more than just an entertaining story. It was also true…
For many years, people would wonder if the track I Got a Story to Tell was more than meets the ears. Was it true? Could it be true? The whispers over the years would run aloud. From the speculation over who it could be to could it even be possible? Was there a game where the Jazz and Knicks played and a player could rush home to find Biggie and a just sexed woman. If so, who could it have been? All the rumors and whispers came to end on September 16th, 2014 when one of the much rumored participants, John Starks appearing on ESPN’s Highly Questionable, in one swift moment killed the rumors of himself and in the same moment that the story, while not about him confirmed it was indeed very true.
The who, the how and the possible
“This b***h playa this bitch f**kin’ run them ol Knick ass n***s and shit
I’m up in the spot though. One of them six-five n***s, I don’t know.”
Let’s presume the story is indeed true. Let’s look at some facts. Life After Death was released in March of 1997 and written over a period of September of 1996 through January 1997. That would mean that the incident would have had to happen either early on in the writing process or the year prior. Once again, presuming that the story is real then there are only a few candidates that would match Biggie’s description. But before we get to that, let’s go back a little bit.
The song mentions that while having sex, the New York Knicks player was playing the Utah Jazz. Well… if the incident happened in 1996, there was only one time that the Utah Jazz visited the Knicks and that was on December 17, 1996. A game that the Knicks won 99-94 and featured only 2 players other than Starks (Only 6’2″… on a good day) that could have been considered around 6’5″. Allan Houston who is listed at 6’6″ (though really is only 6’5″) and the 6’3″ Chris Childs.
The other possibility is more likely and happened in 1995. On November 12th, 1995, the Jazz would make their only trip to New York in a game the Knicks won 120-110. Why is this game more likely the date of the incident? This game featured a few possible candidates, but also a few candidates who would have reason to leave the locker room early and rush home. Candidates from the November 1995 game include the much rumored victim Hubert Davis (6’5″), Doug Christie (6’6″), Gary Grant (6’3″) and Derek Harper (6’4″).
- John Starks
- Allan Houston
- Chris Childs
- Hubert Davis
- Doug Christie
- Gary Grant
- Derek Harper
Breaking down the evidence
Well let’s for a moment take John Starks at his word. Giving him the benefit of the doubt, that means we have 6 candidates over a 2 year period. The Jazz visited the Knicks twice, once each year between 1995 and 1996. While not for sure, we can also probably cross off Chris Childs and Allan Houston because there is little likelihood that Biggie would have written the song last minute to be included in the album. While it was later on the album, it was probably written sometime between September and December and before the game on the 17th of that December. Which means we are now down to four candidates.
The internet’s number one suspect is Hubert Davis. Why? The song mentions that the victim was 6’5″. Out of the players involved in the game, Davis is the only one that is technically listed at 6’5″. Since we are all trying to get to the bottom of this, people are taking the song literal. Assuming that Biggie said 6’5″ with a purpose and was being exact. Davis, did play in the November 12th game and was only 1-4 in 9 minutes of play. But to assume he was upset enough to leave the locker room early because of his performance is actually kind of ridiculous. Why? Because the Knicks won. If he had cost them the game then that might be valid. However, Davis was a core member of the Knicks rotation and one so-so game was hardly reason for him to rush out of the locker room and want to leave early home. To further kill the Davis rumor… He is actually only about 6’4″ and one very interesting quote from the song that just doesn’t sound like something Davis would do or be rich enough to be even able of…
“Flash the heat on em, he stood emotionless
Dropped the glass screamin’, “Don’t blast here’s the stash, the sh*t was plush
A hundred cash just don’t shoot my ass, please!”
N***a pullin’ mad G’s out the floor
Put stacks in a Prada knapsack, hit the door
Grab the keys to the five, call my n***s on the cell
Bring some weed I got a story to tell, uhh
Gary Grant was a role player on the Knicks in 1995. While formerly a star with the Clippers, Grant was reduced to a role player with the Knicks. He also had a poor shooting performance, going 3-8 from the floor. However, Grant would still score 12 points (6-6 from the line) and would also have little reason to rush out of the locker room. While standing only 6’3″, he’s also very unlikely. The reason he is included is more to look at every possibility, but not to rule him out, Grant was more into a faster lifestyle and would not be a shock to anyone if it were discovered that he had a Prade knapsack or a stash of cash.
Derek Harper is probably the least likely of the candidates. Happily married for years, it’s not obscene to think of an NBA player cheating especially if the wife lives in a different city but Harper also had no reason to leave early. He had a decent game with 20 points and was key in the victory. He might have been more likely to be stuck after the game doing interviews if nothing else. Basically eliminating the 6’4″ guard from being eligible. Height wise he is a fit, but we have little reason to believe that Harper was the victim of Biggie’s song.
Last but not least… Doug Christie. Quickly overlooked because Christie did not even play in the game, might be the reason he is the most likely suspect. At 6’6″ (at an NBA exaggerated height), he fits around the 6’5″ target height. He wouldn’t need to shower, he didn’t get a chance to play. After the game, he could have just come straight home. Christie was not injured and had reason to be at the game. So him coming home would early still have been a surprise. Let’s be real, it would also have not caught anyone by surprise if Christie had a Prada knapsack or a stash of cash. Christie also wasn’t married until 2002, so he could have easily been single and free to have a girlfriend or woman he was having relations with on the side.
The most realistic conclusion is that it was either Hubert Davis or Doug Christie. The rumor mill has been buzzing for years that the only possibility was Davis. He played that night and is listed at the literal height of 6’5″. However, the more likely suspect is none other than Doug Christie. Why? Christie was traded to the Knicks when he became unhappy with his playing time with the Los Angeles Lakers. Still not playing with New York, he certainly couldn’t have been happy about that. If Christie was still malcontent, then he would definitely been a candidate to change quickly and leave the locker room in a rush to get home. Davis had little reason to be unhappy. He played a reserve roll and the November 12th game while not his best was not an abnormal experience. Davis also played much better the next game a few days later when the Knicks played the Suns scoring 10 points and hitting 2 threes. Hardly the reaction of a player that would have possibly been shaken by an incident such as this. It’s also hard to imagine that Biggie was being literal in his 6’5″ declaration and was more than likely generalizing the height as he said “I don’t know… one of them 6’5″ n***s.”
Christie for his part did not play against the Suns in the next game on November 14th. Only limited minutes the 2 games after that. In fact, other than a brief stretch in January of 1996, Christie would not play regular minutes until mid-February of 1996. One will never know if Doug is the guy but it sure lends a strong case that the Knick in question was indeed Doug Christie not the much rumored Hubert Davis. Flying under the radar because most look at the stat line, few look to who had a DNP that night on November 12th, 1995.
While we will never probably know the answer, that doesn’t stop us from playing the if this and the maybe that game. Tragically, Biggie took this secret to his grave on March 9th, 1997. Since none of his friends are talking, and short of Starks proclamation, no other Knicks or the player involved are likely to talk about the incident. The player surely is embarrassed and the other Knicks are likely to leave the story alone out of brotherhood. All we have left is the lyrics of one of the greatest MC’s ever to keep us guessing…
Update (May 2016)
Fat Joe has since weighed in on the story. The story to tell was about the one and only… Anthony Mason.