It's time for another firsthand account of Papa John getting shitfaced. If you haven't already, please check out our previous coverage of Papa John getting shitfaced. There was the time he got all fucked up at a basketball game, the time he allegedly proved himself to be a huge lightweight, and the time he may have enjoyed a few drinks with some "chicken heads." Today's story comes from reader Chester, and it is almost certainly too good to be true:
It was August 1999, I had just met up with another Ball State alum Bonzi Wells at an autograph signing in Portland. I asked Bonzi if I could buy him a drink and he told me he’d be heading to Mary’s Club later that night. Now at that time, there were two things that occupied 100% of my free time, Trail Blazers basketball and putting the girls from Mary’s through college. I walked into the club and spotted Bonzi with a stack of singles that would make Adam Jones jealous. Sitting next to Bonzi was John Schnatter wearing a Shawn Kemp jersey, eyes half open, huge lip in, repeating the phrase, “My neck, my back”, over and over again. I walked over and reminded Bonzi of our brief conversation and repeated my offer to buy him a drink. “Sit down, shut up and pour yourself a glass,” he said motioning to the bottle of champagne in the bucket on the table. I followed his orders and went to cheers Mr. Schnatter, he slammed his glass into mine, causing me to spill on him, myself and spray Bonzi a little. Needless to say I was told to move to another table immediately.
Attempts to contact Bonzi Wells were unsuccessful:
@bonziwells Hey Bonzi, I'm a reporter from Deadspin and would like to ask you a quick question. Can you follow me so I can DM you?— Tom Ley (@ToLey88) April 10, 2013
@bonziwells Hi Bonzi, we'd like to ask you a question for a story we're working on. Could you email firstname.lastname@example.org?— Deadspin (@Deadspin) April 19, 2013
Attempts to contact Papa John, however, were more fruitful. After speaking to multiple employees from Papa John's public relations firm, I received the following statement from the firm's CEO, Mike Sitrick:
Per our discussion, I spoke with John Schnatter regarding the story you are preparing about him “hitting” a strip club with then-Portland Trailblazer Bonzi Wells back in 1999, spilling champagne on Mr. Wells and Mr. Wells then getting thrown out. Mr. Schnatter says none of what you described happened. The story is untrue. Since you said you do not publish items that are untrue, we would expect that this false assertion will not be published. Please let me know if a decision to the contrary is made.
I must not be very good at relaying information over the phone. Also, I'd like to point out that Mr. Sitrick did not confirm or deny whether Papa John owns a Shawn Kemp jersey.
Got a story about drinking with the Papa? Email us: email@example.com.