Watson to lead N.Y. City into hoops clash

The People’s Games (www.PeoplesGames.com) is a new sports concept that offers non-pro’s from all walks of life the opportunity to represent their cities in competition against other U.S. cities to prove which city has the best athletes in various sports.

New York Head Coach Earl “The Pearl” Monroe pared down his final roster in anticipation of the series against L.A. and his budding rivalry with former UCLA and Lakers start Lucius Allen, who will man the sidelines for the City of Angels.

The People’s Games launches Sunday, May 8, at Venice Courts in Los Angeles.

Durrell Watson grew up in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn and had a hard time of it growing up in an underserved, drug-ridden and dangerous neighborhood. He hung around with a bad crowd and was around when trouble came at various times. He has suffered four stab wounds (one wound was about an inch away from causing permanent paralysis) and credits God with saving his life, giving him the opportunity for a second chance. He took full advantage of this second chance.

Watson works at the Institute of Community Living, where he has been for three years, as a caseworker for individuals with mental illness. This position keeps him grounded and provides him with a good learning experience. Further down the road, he wants to work with children and other at-risk youth. He wants to be an inspiration and to help other kids get off the street and that cycle of living.

His passion for basketball was also one of the things that set him straight. His is certainly a story of survival and redemption.