Byrdgang’s brief run prior to Stacks’ passing and Jim and Max’s falling out provided some of New York’s finest and still under-documented music of the 2000s. At least from a non-New Yorker looking in it did. Then the connection revealed itself. Jim Jones, Max B and Stack Bundles are Hip-Hop’s Tim Hardaway, Mitch Richmond and Chris Mullin.
Both were different options from “the norm” in terms of fan hood, yet all three parts blended, for the most part, effortlessly. Tim Hardaway/Jim Jones were the floor generals. And maybe in some sort of parallel universe Jim’s ad-libs were his equivalent to Timmy’s “Killer Crossover.” Mitch Richmond/Stack Bundles had talent which seemed to only be limited by the sky itself. Meanwhile, Max B/Chris Mullin had games and talents so unique (Max’s voice and Chris’ laser-like accuracy) it’d be impossible to imagine their respective sport without them.
Of course, neither trio were allowed to make as big an impact as they could have. Run TMC were the reason the Warriors led the lead the league in scoring the 1989-90 season. Their second place finish in the same category the following year capped off with Mullin finishing eighth in points per game and Hardaway and Richmond 10th and 11th, respectively. They sold out every home game and became just as big a spectacle in the league at said time as anybody.* After falling to Magic’s Lakers in the West Semis in 1991, TMC was disbanded as Richmond was shipped to Sacramento and Hardaway later blew out his knee; an injury which occurred in eerie fashion to that of Derrick Rose’s and one he currently warns D-Rose not to rush back from.
The highlight of Jim, Max and Stack’s run culminated in 2006’s M.O.B. mixtape. Like TMC’s two season explosion, the proof was in the pudding. Their collective styles meshed seamlessly for a recipe of street rap with the sprinklings and potential to achieve some sort of mainstream credibility (outside of Jim). Byrdgang’s fate, on the other hand, is a somber one highlighted by death, prison and betrayal; an elixir the Hip-Hop community has become all-too-familiar with.
Run TMC and Byrdgang’s situations embody the fine line between “what was,” “what wasn’t” and “what could have been” while driving home the solemn realization life’s ability to deliver storybook endings is rare. At least there’s YouTube and Google though.
Stack Bundles, Max B & Jim Jones – “F*cks With You”
Jim Jones Feat. Max B & Stack Bundles – “Your Majesty”
Previously: On Potential And When Byrdgang Flew High
* – Following this Warriors team, there may have not been another offense in any sport to score with this sort of ease and excitement until that “Greatest Show On Turf” St. Louis Rams team. Somewhere, a Vikings fan just flipped their table over in disgust.