Some people doubted Ron Artest's table leg stabbing story, but I guess there's this thing called the Internet and some people actually did do the Google to find the truth.
Someone dug up an old AP story from April 15, 1991, about Lloyd Newton, a 19-year-old basketball player from Queens who was killed in a fight at a Y.M.C.A. tournament in Niagara Falls.
The player, Lloyd Newton, was stabbed in the back with a leg from the scorer's table at the championship game of a Y.M.C.A.-sponsored tournament at the Niagara Falls Boys and Girls Club, the police in Niagara Falls said.
"An argument ensued about the score," Capt. Louis Curcione said, adding that one of the teams "thought they were getting gypped."
"A fight broke out between the players and about 40 fans in the stands," he said. "In the course of the fight, one person was stabbed in the back."
Newton died on the way to the hospital. A local teenager, Brian C. Young, was charged with second-degree murder, but a cursory online search did not reveal anything about the results of the case. However, there is a Brian C. Young, also from the Buffalo area and roughly the same age, who is currently in a New York State jail on drug charges. It could be a different Brian Young (it's a common enough name), but it might be the same.
It's not clear if Artest actually witnessed the game in person (it's unlikely actually; he was 12 at the time) or knew Newton personally (possibly) or simply heard the tale. But it did happen and yeah, it's very sad.
Player Dies in Stabbing at Basketball Game - The New York Times [AP/New York Times]
As It Turns Out, Ron Artest's Story About The Table Leg Through The Chest Really Happened [Mouthpiece Sports]
CRIME: Brian Muhammad has charges against him dismissed [MySpace]
Ron Artest Maybe Crazy, But He Isn't A Liar: Table Leg Murder Story Is True!!! [BlackSportsOnline]