With the NBA, NHL, NASCAR and other major sports leagues and sporting events suspended or canceled, professional athletes are using their platforms to facilitate financial support for arena workers and those affected by COVID-19 across the nation. Each day, we will feature a philanthropic effort taking place in the sports world.
Tuesday is the anniversary of Devin Booker's 70-point game against the Boston Celtics in 2017.
Fast-forward to today, and Booker is more concerned with running up the numbers in a different way.
The 23-year old Booker is considered the face of the Phoenix Suns franchise, after he burst onto the scene in 2015 and has since displayed a legendary scoring prowess, evidenced by that big game at Boston.
But, similar to scoring, Booker also has an affinity for gaming. So he decided to take his love for the virtual world and apply it to his efforts to support those in-need during the coronavirus pandemic.
Twitch is a global live-streaming platform, mainly used by gamers, and prior to the coronavirus outbreak, Booker used the platform on a regular basis, inviting fans to join in on his gaming sessions via Twitter.
Now, Booker has pledged $100,000 to COVID-19 relief efforts and is asking the Twitch world to join him in donating. The Phoenix Suns Charities are matching Booker's gift.
In a press release, the Suns announced which organizations the funds would support:
Funds will benefit non-profits like the Arizona Food Bank Network, which is providing hunger-relief for children, families and seniors, the Foundation for Senior Living, which provides affordable housing, meals and caregiver support to seniors, and Banner Health Foundation to support community testing, including potential new approaches such as drive-through clinics. As the enormous impact of COVID-19 continues to evolve, Booker and the Phoenix Suns Charities Board of Directors will continue to coordinate with public health experts, local officials and other community partners to determine where support is needed most.
Booker is no stranger to charitable efforts. In 2019, he committed to donating $2.5 million over a five-year period to the Phoenix Suns Charities to support local nonprofit and research organizations.