The NBA dunk competition has been one of the more controversial and contested aspects of All-Star Weekend over the last five years, and for good reason. The competition has been unable to attract the marquee name players to participate, thus letting down a large deal of mainstream fans. We did a little digging and found one reason you may enjoy watching the contest a bit more this weekend.
If you weren’t a fan of Toronto Raptors guard Terrence Ross, you definitely should be come Saturday night. Ross will be using his entrance in the Sprite Slam Dunk contest as one part of his three-part fundraising campaign in partnership with “Dunk Cancer” and its month-long initiative, ”Dunk Cancer Month,” during the NBA’s All-Star Weekend.
According to the NBA:
Ross has committed to help raise money to benefit the Children’s Cancer Association and his high school back home, Jefferson High, in Portland, Ore.
“Ever since I was in about the third grade, my mom has run an out-of-home day care service,” Ross said. “So there were always kids around. One of the kids that she took care of had cancer. We were close to the family and were always around each other so it hit home for us. That’s the main reason I’ve chosen to support “Dunk Cancer” and “Dunk Cancer Month.”
Ross kicks off the first leg of the campaign on Thursday as he’ll host a 72-hour, Twitter-based online fundraiser from his @T_DotFlight31 twitter handle. Using the #dunkcancer hash tag, he will encourage Twitter users to support “Dunk Cancer Month” by purchasing “Dunk Cancer” merchandise (T-shirts, hoodies etc.) at dunkcancer.com.
During Saturday night’s slam dunk contest, Ross will donate $2,000 to “Dunk Cancer” for every round he advances in the three-round slam-dunk competition.
I’m glad the NBA picked up on this story and got it out there, the entire NBA needs more stories like this, not just on All-Star Weekend. Ross’ good deeds don’t end when he leaves Houston on Sunday.
After the All-Star break, Ross, the eighth overall pick last June, will turn his attention to his old high school in Portland. As the Raptors are playing the Washington Wizards next Tuesday, Jefferson High will be taking on Benson High. Ross will donate $500 for each dunk a Jefferson player slams home, up to $2,000. The money will go to support the school’s athletic program.