Basketball court renamed in honor of Notorious B.I.G.

BySandy Kenyon and Eyewitness News WABC logo
Thursday, August 3, 2017
Basketball court renamed in honor of Notorious B.I.G.
Sandy Kenyon reports on the renaming ceremony of a basketball court in honor of Notorious B.I.G.

BEDFORD-STUYVESANT, Brooklyn (WABC) -- Just a few blocks from the home where Christopher Wallace grew up, local leaders, members of his family and ordinary fans paused to reflect on the legacy of the man who became rapper Notorious B.I.G.

Long before fame came, the kids in Bed-Stuy first called Christopher Wallace "Biggie" due to his size on the same basketball courts named in his honor.

A ribbon cutting ceremony at Crispus Attucks playground in Bed-Stuy marked the occasion on Wednesday as a sign went up renaming the courts.

The renaming fulfills a promise Councilman Robert Cornegy made to the rapper's mother after Wallace's death. "He would have been so grateful for this. He would have been proud of himself. I'm proud of him. We're all very proud for this park being named after him," his daughter T'yanna Wallace said.

WATCH: Sandy Kenyon talks to T'yanna Wallace

T'yanna Wallace talks about what the tribute to her dad hip hop star Biggie Smalls, means to her.

For all the glamour that seemed to hypnotize him, those who worked with him say Biggie never forgot his old neighborhood.

"He was one of those friends you'd love to have that's quiet but always joking. Kind-hearted. Sometimes too kind-hearted, but a good friend to always have in your corner," Nino Brown said.

"His legacy lives on forever. The seeds he planted in this community have gone global," April Walker said.

More than twenty years have passed since his funeral procession through the streets of Brooklyn after the rapper was shot dead at the age of 24. His murder? Never solved.

His legacy was recalled by P. Diddy recently on ABC's Nightline.

"I wanted to make sure that this dream meant something at the end of the day," he said.

In Bed-Stuy, there's no doubt this dream still resonates. A basketball tournament will be played on the courts in his honor this weekend.