Making a Homicide | The Players' Tribune

 Photograph By Taylor Baucom/The Players' Tribune

Photograph By Taylor Baucom/The Players' Tribune


Corey (Homicide) Williams
Streetball Legend

I had all their names on a sheet of paper. Written in pencil. Every single respected streetballer in New York City.

One by one, I was going to destroy them.

I was going to dominate every last one of them, until they couldn’t look me in the fucking eye. When I had them in my pocket, only then would they be crossed off the list.

This was before streetball went mainstream. Before kids were doing crossovers in their driveway and screaming “Hot Sizzle!” We weren’t chasing magazine covers. The only currency was respect. So that’s what I tried to get.

Everyone knows that there are commentators at these streetball games, and they’ll give you a name based on your style of play. These nicknames are usually just based off of your first few plays at a big tournament. Trust me, you want a good nickname. When I started my first game, I got a nickname early.

“He’s workin’ hard! The Hard Worker!”

Whack. Fortunately, nicknames tend to evolve a little bit.

“Naw that ain’t gonna fit him. We need him a better name.”

The game keeps going, and they’re shouting out other names. I started getting a little excited because I’m balling and these names keep getting more vicious.

“The Killa!”

“The Murderer!”

“Naw, what’s his name?! What’s his name?!”

Then somebody off to the side whispers “Corey Williams.”

“A’ight, we gonna call him C-Murda!”

“Naw, we gonna call him C-Homicide!”

I don’t think I need to show you a highlight reel from the game. The name says it all.

And after my second game, they dropped the C.

The process was complete and now I was a felony on the court.

I was Homicide.

Incredible story, read on.