Does Kendrick Lamar's "Euphoria" Diss Include a Sly Nod to Drake's 2009 Robbery?

Did Kendrick mention New Ho King restaurant as a nod to a forgotten incident in Drake's history?

Kendrick Lamar in a white tee and bandana, Drake in a denim jacket at an event
Images via Getty/Jacopo Raule & Getty/Jordan Jones/NBAE
Kendrick Lamar in a white tee and bandana, Drake in a denim jacket at an event

As fans continue to run up Kendrick Lamar’s densely constructed "Euphoria" diss, the potential revelations keep coming. One such example zeroes in on Kendrick’s mention of New Ho King, a Chinese restaurant in Drake’s hometown of Toronto that’s popular among the late-night crowd.

Towards the end of "euphoria," Kendrick starts rapping in a Canadian accent and says:

I be at New Ho King eatin' fried rice with a dip sauce and blammy, crodie

As previously reported, the seemingly random (perhaps deceptively so) mention has led to Kendrick fans leaving glowing reviews for the restaurant. But as some have started to point out—including the eagle-eyed fan seen theorizing below—the seemingly random mention may not be so random after all.

I’d like to clarify that I am not saying that Drake for certain cooperated with police or not

There is only so much info available regarding this case and I was simply making a connection I saw between it and the bars on Kendrick’s track

So take this how you will

— ALMIGHTEE. (@realalmightee) May 1, 2024

As longtime 6 God fans know, Drake was reportedly robbed in Toronto in May 2009 after he and a woman he was with at the time left a local restaurant. A New York Times profile the following year mentioned the incident, noting he cooperated with the police investigation:

 In May 2009 he was robbed at gunpoint in a Toronto restaurant. He cooperated with the police investigation, in what some perceived as a violation of hip-hop’s no-snitching ethos. The black gossip Web site posted a snapshot of a page of the criminal complaint under the headline “Caught Snitchin!!! Rapper Drake Testifying Against Men Who Robbed Him!!!”

Also in 2010, Drake spoke to GQ about the incident, calling it "a setup" due to the perpetrators demanding his chain. According to Drake, those responsible "banged on the car window with a gun and opened the door," then demanded a chain he had received from Young Money founder Lil Wayne.

Meanwhile, a 2010 report from Canadian publication Globe and Mail points out that those found to be responsible for the robbery ultimately spent about six months behind bars. The same report also posits that a second alleged gunman ultimately "escaped," adding that Drake was being criticized at the time for purportedly cooperating with an investigation of some sort. However, the report also speculates that Drake may not have been fully cooperative with the ensuing inquiry into the robbery itself. All of this, as seen above, is touched on in the latest fan speculation surrounding Kendrick's "Euphoria."

Fast forward a decade, and Drake appeared to reference the robbery on his Dark Lane Demo Tapes cut "From Florida With Love," rapping:

Weezy played that shit for me and Kobe on the bus
Went and got a chain for me, I had to give it up
N***as had they pistols loaded pointed at my truck
And you know that lesson stuck

If Kendrick was indeed referring to this incident with his New Ho King line, it might help explain another lyric on the track where Gunna catches a stray. "I know some shit about n***as that make Gunna Wunna look like a saint," raps Kendrick.

To be clear, with regards to Gunna, it’s been repeatedly confirmed by him and his team that no cooperation took place. Instead, Gunna took an Alford plea in the widely criticized YSL RICO case, which means, as Gunna himself explained in a statement in December 2022, that he entered "a guilty plea to the one charge against me, which is in my best interest, while at the same time maintaining my innocence toward the same charge."

In the full statement, Gunna also said he was not cooperating with the case, nor would he be further involved.

As for Drake, the above speculations are merely a fan-fueled interpertation on what Kendrick could have meant by his lyrics, though the robbery incident was reported at the time and confirmed by Drake. There's a chance we might get some confirmation as this battle continues to unfold.

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