The recognition continues for Wizards point guard John Wall, but this time it comes from what he has been doing off the court. He received the NBA Cares Community Assist Award, the league announced Tuesday, for the month of October.
"It was great. Something I wanted to do. It's an opportunity for me to give back to the community and my John Wall Family Foundation is a big part of it," Wall said after the Wizards had shootaround at Verizon Center. "What we want to do is help people who are less fortunate, help younger men that need help and assistance and getting an education with activities and doing those type of things."
The reasons for the award are plentiful:
- Made a donation to non-Hodgkin lymphoma research in honor of DaMiyah Telemaque-Nelson, a fan/friend he lost last year to Burkitt’s lymphoma at 5.
- Sponsored the “Miyah’s Troupe” walking team, and joined DaMiyah’s family in the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night Walk that took place in D.C.
- Held his annual #2SQUAD Back to School distribution for 600 students from D.C. and his hometown of Raleigh, N.C. They received new backpacks full of school supplies.
- Through the John Wall Family Foundation he funded the Passport to Manhood Program at the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Washington, a program that teaches adolescent boys responsibility, leadership and the importance of giving back through service projects.
- Visited D.C.’s Bright Beginnings, a non-profit that provides shelter, education and meals to homeless children and their parents. His $400,000 donation will help open a new facility.
Wall will be honored with the David Robinson Award during tonight's game vs. the Milwaukee Bucks for an on-court ceremony. NBA legend Bob Lanier, who is an NBA Cares ambassador, and franchise owner Ted Leonsis will be in attendance. Also, the Kaiser Permanente, the award's sponsor, and NBA will donate $10,000 on Wall's behalf to his own foundation.
"It's pretty big to get recognized for it. To get noticed for it means a lot," Wall said. "That's not the reason why I do it to get noticed but it's an honor to get noticed by NBA Cares and it's something that I will continue to do."