Kevin Durant #35 of the Golden State Warriors, seen here driving to the basket against JR Smith #5… [+] of the Cleveland Cavaliers during Game Four of the 2018 NBA Finals, has taken his drives off the court as well. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
It’s safe to say that Kevin Durant doesn’t just dribble. In fact, the Warriors forward is becoming a model for today’s and tomorrow’s star athlete.
Sure, many people may realize that the All-Star forward won the NBA Championship with the Golden State Warriors and was named the NBA Finals Most Valuable Player. But do you know that he also recently received the 2017-2018 NBA Cares Community Assist Award and the Muhammad Ali Sports Humanitarian Award at the 2018 Sports Humanitarian of the Year Awards in Los Angeles? That’s being more well-rounded than a basketball.
Here’s a video of Durant being named this year’s NBA Cares Community Assist Award recipient:
.@KDTrey5 of the @warriors takes home the 2017-2018 @nbacares #NBACommunityAssist Award! #ThisIsWhyWePlay #NBAAwards pic.twitter.com/UMYcadMNjH
— NBA (@NBA) June 26, 2018
At the recent Laureus Sports for Good Foundation Summit in Los Angeles on July 18, 2018, the day that would have been Nelson Mandela’s 100th birthday, star athletes ranging from previous Olympic Gold medalists such as Benita Fitzgerald Mosely and Julie Foudy to current NBA All-Star Chris Paul emphasized how they can use their available platforms to improve the health of communities around them. What they said wasn’t just dribble. Star athletes are in unique positions in that they have the attention of many people and intimately understand the importance of health. After all, feel like garbage and win games usually don’t go together.
Of course, star athletes also don’t have an abundance of time. Indeed, regularly binge watching Netflix and winning games don’t go together either. Thus, finding time in between the games, the practicing, and the conditioning work can be challenging.
Thus, it is no small feat that Durant has been utilizing his very large platform to help the health of surrounding communities. When the voting for this year’s NBA Cares Community Assist Award voting first opened, I wrote about some of his contributions. As described in an NBA Press Release, his growing portfolio of work has included:
- Committing $10 million over 10 years to the College Track college pipeline program
- Donating $3 million to the University of Texas’ basketball programs and its Center for Sports Leadership and Innovation (CSLi).
- Contributing to Colin Kaepernick’s “10 for 10” campaign, matching his $10,000 donation and directing the funds toward Silicon Valley De-Bug, a Bay Area organization that does community-based justice work
- Pledging to support four Boys and Girls Clubs of the Peninsula’s Youth of the Year nominees with college scholarships
- Donating $100,000 to the American Red Cross to aid Hurricane Harvey recovery efforts
- Donating game-worn and signed items to assist with Northern California wildfire relief
- Supporting the Oakland Elizabeth House and Larkin Street Youth Services and donating $12,500 to each to support their services for women and youth facing homelessness,