Teen killed on Queens basketball court dreamed of playing for the NBA

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JAMAICA, Queens — A teen with dreams of playing for the NBA was practicing on a Queens basketball court when he was killed Saturday night.

Aamir Griffin

Aamir Griffin wasn’t just a good kid, he was a great kid, his basketball coach at Benjamin N. Cardozo High School said.

“It’s a tragedy. It’s so sad,” Coach Ron Naclerio said.

Griffin was killed by a single gunshot around 8 p.m. Saturday at a court near his home in the Baisley Park Houses

“Every kid has strengths, every kid has weaknesses,” Naclerio said. “None of his weaknesses was wanting to be a great person, wanting to be a great player, wanting to be a great student, wanting to do what was right for his mother, his father.”

Griffin was known to be a hardworking student who never missed a day of school and was always home by his 9 p.m. curfew.

Naclerio compared Griffin to star basketball player Magic Johnson.

“I saw Magic play in the NBA. He had the greatest smile,” Naclerio said, “Well Aamir had the same Magic Johnson smile as a 14-year-old that Magic Johnson had.”

Friends and family gathered at the basketball court Sunday night for a vigil. They prayed and released orange balloons into the sky.

Submit tips to police by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), visiting http://www.nypdcrimestoppers.com, downloading the NYPD Crime Stoppers mobile app, or texting 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. Spanish-speaking callers are asked to dial 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). 

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