Welcome to the Yahoo Sports good news tracker, where we shine a little sunshine amid the dreary news taking over our news feeds. Even though basically everything is canceled due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, there is still awesome stuff happening in the world of sports.
Prepare to feel warm and fuzzy. And check back in when you need a pick-me-up.
Bryce Harper donates $500K to food efforts
Philadelphia Phillies superstar Bryce Harper is donating $500,000 to relief efforts in his hometown of Las Vegas and his team’s city of Philly.
The money is going toward three different organizations. Direct Relief is a group with a presence in every state and 80 countries that is trying to provide the medical field with needed personal protection equipment. The other two organizations are for food relief in each of the locations.
Tom Brady partners with Feeding America to raise money
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady is encouraging people to donate to Feeding America. Brady announced a partnership with the program Thursday, and wants to supply 10 million meals to people around the country.
— Tom Brady (@TomBrady) April 2, 2020
To do so, Brady is asking for your help. He posted a link to Feeding America’s donation page, hoping others would step up and give to a good cause.
JJ Redick providing meals in New Orleans
The New Orleans Pelicans announced on Thursday that JJ Redick and his wife Chelsea are working to provide meals to those in need in New Orleans, which has seen one of the nation’s worst COVID-19 outbreaks.
JJ and Chelsea are working with Lineage Logistics to provide 1.8 million meals to residents of South Louisiana. They’re working in conjunction with national hunger-relief organization Feeding America and local nonprofit Second Harvest Food Bank.
Al Horford donates $500K to coronavirus relief
Philadelphia 76ers forward Al Horford has donated $500,000 to combat the coronavirus pandemic, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reports. The money will go to help causes in Horford’s home country of the Dominican Republic as well as Michigan, Gainesville, Florida, Atlanta, Boston and Philadelphia, places where he has played basketball.
Christian McCaffrey launches initiative to help healthcare workers
Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey is doing what he can to help healthcare workers in Carolina. The 23-year-old launched an initiative Thursday to help “frontline healthcare providers” who are helping those with coronavirus everyday.
Today, I'm launching a new initiative called "22 and You" to support our frontline healthcare heroes in the Carolinas. Join me and give what you can athttps://t.co/2sZQ93FYx9 #22&YOU #stayhomestayhealthy #COVID19relief @lowes @bose pic.twitter.com/6yp8JpP8ux
— Christian McCaffrey (@CMC_22) April 2, 2020
McCaffrey’s program, “22 and You,” will raise funds for those people. He’s partnered with Lowe’s and Bose to donate money to the NC Healthcare Foundation and South Carolina Hospital Association Foundation.
Shin-Soo Choo helping out Rangers minor leaguers
Texas Rangers outfielder Shin-Soo Choo is donating $100,000 to support minor-league players during the coronavirus pandemic, according to multiple reports. The 37-year-old veteran reportedly plans to give $1,000 to each of the 190 players in the Rangers farm system.
Marcus Smart and Sean Payton donate plasma
Two of the highest-profile coronavirus patients in the sports world are now trying to help fight the disease.
Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart and New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton both reportedly intend to donate their plasma to combat the spread of coronavirus. Per The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Smart plans to donate his plasma to the National COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma Project. Payton has a similar hopes, according to USA Today’s Jarrett Bell.
Smart in particular has been outspoken about the seriousness of the pandemic.
I was tested 5 days ago and the results came back tonight, which were positive. Ive been self quarantined since the test, thank goodness. COVID-19 must be taken w the highest of seriousness. I know it’s a #1 priority for our nations health experts, & we must get more testing ASAP pic.twitter.com/xkijb9wlKV
— marcus smart (@smart_MS3) March 19, 2020
Packers dining staff supports community, health care workers
The Green Bay Packers dining staff has switched their focus from meals for players, coaches and team personnel to for the community. The crew has so far helped by making:
400 meals per week for students at local school districts
1,000 meals per week for staff at area healthcare facilities
5,000 protein bars and 3,500 protein shakes to local schools for students
supplying food pantries and shelters with meals and non-perishable items
The donations are in addition to the $1.5 million community relief fund.
Augusta National donates $2M for testing, emergency fund
Augusta National Golf Club is donating $2 million for coronavirus relief, chairman Fred Ridley said Monday.
"It is our hope these gifts will help address the many challenges brought about by the coronavirus throughout the city of Augusta and the greater region," Ridley said. "We believe Augusta National has an important responsibility to support and protect the community who has so generously and consistently supported us for many years."
The club will give $1 million to Augusta University to help expand testing for COVID-19 and $1 million to the emergency fund to support those in need. The Masters, initially scheduled to begin next week, was postponed.
Steph Curry, Simone Biles among stars donating gear
Sports stars from around the world are donating signed gear to an auction raising money for COVID-19 relief. Stephen Curry, Simone Biles, Rob Gronkowski and Dale Earnhardt Jr. are among the sports figures contributing items to the fund. Anyone who donates $25 is eligible to win.
Texans’ Laremy Tunsil commits $250K for those struggling with bills
Houston Texans tackle Laremy Tunsil has committed up to $250,000 in COVID-19 relief funds, he announced on social media. It includes donations to the Florida Gateway Food Bank in his hometown and the Star of Hope Mission in Houston.
Tunsil said he’ll also help those struggling to pay bills. His team will go over the requests and give on a “need basis” through April 5.
Milwaukee mascot maker produces medical masks
The Milwaukee-based Olympus Group usually makes signs, banners and flags for sports stadiums, trade shows and amusement parks. They also make mascots, such as the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Bucky the Badger and the Racing Sausages at Brewers games. With sports on hold, the company is instead manufacturing 100,000 face shields for local hospitals.
Olympus is producing thousands per day at or below cost and it’s a “great way to keep paying our staff,” CEO Brian Adam told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
"Our culture and our beliefs wouldn't be to profit off something like this," Adam said. "We're trying to cover our time and materials. ... If we can do that ... we'll call that a major win."
MSG will pay workers through April
Madison Square Garden will pay the workers at its venues through May 3, the company told staff per Ian Begley of SNYtv. The New York Knicks and Rangers are some of the final major sports teams to commit to paying hourly workers.
In note sent to event staff, MSG said it will pay workers at its multiple venues at minimum thru 5/3. A relief fund has also been established to help employees in need w/$1 million donation from MSG, $1 million from Dolan Family Foundation and $300,000 from MSG management team.
— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) March 28, 2020
MSG will also establish a relief fund to help employees. The Dolan Family Foundation, Knicks’ owner James Dolan’s group, will contribute $1 million.
Deshaun Watson feeding nurses, doctors fighting coronavirus in Houston
Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson catered both lunch and dinner for nurses and doctors at Ben Taub Hospital near NRG Stadium in Houston on Friday, according to the Houston Chronicle.
Watson brought in 200 lunches from Sticky’s Chicken, per the report, and was planning to bring in another 200 meals for dinner on Friday night.
Clippers’ Steve Ballmer donates more than $25M
The University of Washington Medicine’s Emergency Response Fund will receive $10 million. It will go toward speeded up testing for a potential vaccine.
Carlos Correa donates $500k of medical equipment to Houston hospitals
Houston Astros shortstop Carlos Correa announced on his Instagram on Friday that he’s donating $500,000 of medical equipment to Houston area hospitals to help fight the coronavirus pandemic. The equipment he’s sending includes IV poles, rehab machines, surgical equipment, and much more.
Correa notes that the donation is “temporary,” as the equipment will be sent to poor areas of Central America once it’s no longer needed in Houston.
Anthony Davis joins program to feed L.A. health care workers
Los Angeles Lakers star Anthony Davis announced a campaign on Saturday called “Feed the Front Lines” that plans to tackle two of the biggest needs amid the coronavirus outbreak — supporting health care workers and local businesses.
Davis pledged to match alongside Lineage Logistics up to $250,000 in donations to buy meals from Los Angeles-area restaurants to feed health care workers in local hospitals.
Thank you Lineage Logistics, @HelpFeedtheFro1 @WCKitchen for helping me help the community. Thankful that together we are getting jobs to the great Staples Center staff and meals from local restaurants to our heroes in healthcare. pic.twitter.com/8D9iKtjVwm
— Anthony Davis (@AntDavis23) March 27, 2020
MLB halts jersey production to make masks for hospitals
MLB and Fanatics — the company that makes baseball jerseys — have halted uniform production to make masks and gowns for hospitals. Fanatics’ Michael Rubin announced the news on Twitter on Thursday.
Woke up in the middle of the night last week with idea of converting our @Fanatics factory in PA that makes official @MLB jerseys into a facility that makes much needed masks and gowns and then donating them to help fight this horrendous virus. pic.twitter.com/r6FAxUdlgH
— Michael Rubin (@MichaelGRubin) March 26, 2020
Fanatics plans to make one million masks and gowns to give out around Pennsylvania. The company hopes it can expand mask and gown distribution to New Jersey and New York as well.
Federer family makes pledge to Swiss families
Tennis great Roger Federer and his wife Mirka pledged on Thursday to donate 1 million Swiss Francs to help vulnerable families in his home nation of Switzerland. He touted the donation as “just a start” while encouraging others to join his family in helping out.
Chandler Jones donates 150,000 meals to food banks
Chandler Jones of the Arizona Cardinals is making a big donation to help people struggling with hunger and food shortages due to the coronavirus pandemic. He’s donating more than 150,000 meals to food banks in both Arizona and his hometown of Endicott, NY.
"These are really tough times and it is important for me to do my part and help out both here in Arizona and back at home in New York," Jones said via the Cardinals website. "There are a lot of people in need and everything we can do as a community makes a difference."
Brees family donates $5M
New Orleans quarterback Drew Brees and his wife, Brittany, announced a $5 million donation on March 26 to coronavirus relief in Louisiana.
The couple is partnering with food banks, health systems, eateries and delivery companies to provide 10,000 meals per day for those in need “for as long as it takes.”
Wizards, Capitals to pay employees for April
Monumental Sports & Entertainment, the company that owns the Washington Wizards, Capitals and Mystics, will pay their part-time employees for the five games suspended in April. They had already said they’d pay employees for 15 schedule games and events in March.
Monica Dixon, chief administrative officer and president of external affairs, said, via the Washington Post:
“Our ownership group and leadership team are in total agreement that this is the right thing to do.”
“The entire MSE family is focused on preparing for when we eventually come back,” Dixon said. “We are going to come out of this better and stronger because we have the strength and depth on our team to weather this crisis.”
The payments for games over both months total $1.2 million. Chairman Ted Leonsis told full-time staff to continue preparing for the rest of the NHL and NBA seasons. The WNBA currently plans to begin its season as scheduled in mid-May.
Christian Yelich, Jared Goff among athletes donating 100,000 meals
California Strong — a charity made up of prominent athletes — has announced a donation of 100,000 meals to Feeding America. The group released a video on Twitter on Wednesday, announcing the news. Ryan Braun, Jared Goff, Mike Moustakas and Christian Yelich are among those involved in the charity, as is Mike Attanasio, son of Milwaukee Brewers owner Mark Attanasio.
A message from CA Strong founders Ryan Braun, @christianyelich, @jaredgoff, @moosetacos8, and @MikeyAttanasio. We’ll be donating 100,000 meals through @FeedingAmerica and have a number of initiatives in the works to help make the biggest impact possible during these tough times. pic.twitter.com/l0fmXVuegE
— California Strong (@CAstrongfund) March 25, 2020
Bills donate $1.2 million to help Western New York
The Buffalo Bills and owner Kim Pegula have donated $1.2 million to assist Western New York. The team issued a statement Wednesday, saying the money will go toward community aid to help those affected by the coronavirus.
— Buffalo Bills (@BuffaloBills) March 25, 2020
Pegula said she wanted to give “immediate assistance to those in need and those fighting on the front lines.”
NBC to air iconic SNF games starting March 30
You can watch some famous football games on NBC Sports Network starting Monday. NBC announced Wednesday that it would re-air some of the best Sunday Night Football games over the next week and continue the practice on Sunday nights through April.
NBCSN will air two games a night from March 30-April 5 and Monday night’s games will both include Peyton Manning. The first game at 7 p.m. ET will be a 2006 matchup between Eli Manning and the New York Giants and Peyton’s Indianapolis Colts and the second game at 9:30 p.m. will be between the Broncos and New England Patriots from 2013.
The week of games will conclude Sunday evening with the Patriots’ 2018 regular-season win over Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs. After the week is over, NBC will air one game on each of the following three Sunday nights.
Sinclair is advancing sports network freelancers
Sinclair is going to provide cash advances to the nearly 1,000 people who work freelance for the Fox Sports regional networks that it acquired. The move comes after those freelancers were left without work when all North American sports leagues went on hiatus.
The advances are $2,500 and, as you can imagine, will have to be paid back through future game checks by those who take them. So this isn’t totally good news, unfortunately.
Jaguars owner Shad Khan donates $1 million to help Florida
Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan wants to help those affected by the coronavirus. Khan donated $1 million to relief efforts in Florida on Tuesday.
Owner Shad Khan donates $1 million to support northeast Florida's response to the COVID-19 crisis.
Read more ⤵
— #DUUUVAL (@Jaguars) March 24, 2020
That donation will be spread among multiple organizations. The First Coast Relief Fund will receive $400,000, two food organizations will receive $75,000, Jacksonville schools will get $50,000 and the local American Red Cross will also receive $50,000. Khan said it was his “privilege to help.”
New Orleans aquarium names baby penguin after Zion Williamson
The Audubon Aquarium of the Americas in New Orleans had a new adorable African penguin chick hatch last month, and decided to pay homage to the city’s newest sports star.
The aquarium named the penguin Zion, after New Orleans Pelicans rookie Zion Williamson.
Naturally, it had to share some incredibly cute pictures of the newborn chick to Instagram.
Cristiano Ronaldo donates €1 million to supplies hospitals with equipment
Cristiano Ronaldo and his agent have donated €1 million to make sure three hospitals in Portugal have the equipment needed to deal with the coronavirus.
Ronaldo and his agent have donated €1M to finance three intensive care units in Portugal to help during the pandemic 👏 pic.twitter.com/J80jrIdWhf
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) March 24, 2020
The donation from Ronaldo, 35, will include “20 beds, ventilators, heart monitors, infusion pumps and syringes,” according to the Independent. Ronaldo is currently in self isolation with his family after his Juventus teammate, Daniele Rugani tested positive for coronavirus.
Joel Embiid pledges $500k for COVID-19 relief, Sixers employees
Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers announced on Tuesday that he is pledging $500,000 toward COVID-19 relief in his community — but he didn’t stop there.
Philadelphia 76ers star @JoelEmbiid has decided to pledge $500K to COVID-19 medical relief—to help survival and protection efforts in the community. AND he’s committed to helping Sixers employees who will suffer financial hardship in light of the franchise’s salary reductions.
— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) March 24, 2020
Embiid’s donation to support Sixers employees comes less than a day after it was reported that the Sixers, owned by billionaire private equity investor Josh Harris, would be “temporarily” cutting the salaries of at-will employees making more than $50,000 by 20 percent starting in April. It’s being billed as a cost saving measure for the Sixers during the coronavirus pandemic, despite the fact that Harris is a literal billionaire who can afford to continue to fully pay his staff.
Embiid wants to help the employees of the only organization he’s ever played for, even though the very owner of that organization has a decidedly different plan.
Ben Roethlisberger helps Pittsburgh-area restaurant with gift card purchase
Local, non-chain restaurants all over the country are struggling to stay open and pay staff with the many shelter-in-place orders that are now in effect. Juliano’s Italian Restaurant just outside of Pittsburgh is one of those restaurants, but Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger just gave them some much-needed help. Juliano’s owner Nick Scalise told a local radio station that Roethlisberger bought a “significant” number of gift cards, which will allow him to keep his full staff at the restaurant for the time being.
Scalise said that Roethlisberger wasn’t looking for publicity, and plans to give the gift cards out to people who need them.
Packers establish $1.5M fund
The Green Bay Packers established a Packers Give Back relief fund totaling $1.5 million to assist in Brown County, which will get $1 million, and the Milwaukee area, which will get the rest.
"We are facing an unprecedented challenge in our communities," Packers President/CEO Mark Murphy said in a statement. "We know our nonprofit support agencies will be performing their usual excellent work, but they'll need additional resources as various needs and gaps in coverage develop in the coming weeks and months. The Packers are committed to supporting them now and into the future as we all work together to weather this difficult time.”
The Brown County fund is through the Greater Green Bay Community Foundation and the organization will work with the Packers to best direct the funds. The team already gave $300,000 to the local United Way.
Vikings players donate to emergency funds
The Minnesota Vikings released details about three players’ initiatives to give back to the community during the pandemic.
Receiver Adam Thielen and his wife, Caitlin, have donated $25,000 to Harvest Heartland to help serve nutritious food to young people in the community while they’re away from school. The donation was made through the Thielen Foundation.
Linebacker Anthony Barr is offering emergency $500 grants to current of former scholarship participants of his Raise the Barr foundation, which helps single parents complete postsecondary education. He said on Instagram all grants will be approved and as of Monday had already paid out $17,000 to 30 applicants in the first 24 hours.
Former linebacker Chad Greenway and his wife, Jenni, partnered with The Sheridan Story to provide food to children at more than 30 districts that consists of more than 87,000 students who receive free or reduced lunch. As part of the Lead the Way Foundation, the couple kicked off a Hunger Relief Campaign with an initial $10,000 donation. Each $100 feeds 25 children.
Steelers give $100,000 to United Way
The Pittsburgh Steelers are donating $100,000 to the United Way Emergency Basic Needs Fund that helps families impacted economically by COVID-19. It also helps a formalized arrangement with the Allegheny County Health Department, which is receiving calls about CDC guidelines, health and getting necessities.
“We are grateful for the efforts of all the heroes, volunteers and first responders during this crisis, and we hope this donation will assist the United Way in their efforts,” Steelers President Art Rooney II said in a statement.
Jets and Johnson family donate $1 million to United Way
The New York Jets and the Johnson family donated $1 million to the United Way. That donation will go toward a number of things, including the United Way’s COVID-19 Community Fund.
In a statement, Jets CEO Christopher Johnson said the donation would be used for “helping those disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 and the economic consequences of the outbreak."
The Johnson family has owned the Jets since 2000.
Anthony Rizzo’s foundation delivers food to hospital staff and patients
Chicago Cubs star Anthony Rizzo is making sure hospital staff and patients get some food. The Anthony Rizzo Foundation delivered 150 meals to staff and patients at the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital on Monday.
We expanded our Hope44 Meals program & delivered 150 meals to the staff & patients @JDCHospital. We r proud to support the staff who show up every day to care for our ❤️ones.
Stay tuned for another delivery today!!!
Text Hope44 to 52000 to donate $20 & keep this program going! pic.twitter.com/tlrE0pmf7f
— A. Rizzo Foundation (@RizzoFoundation) March 23, 2020
Rizzo also announced the program would expand to other hospitals in the days to come. He thanked everyone who has donated to help the foundation make a difference.
Chiney Ogwumike honors Kobe Bryant with birthday donations
Los Angeles Sparks forward Chiney Ogwumike spent her 28th birthday indoors, just like most of the nation did Saturday. But unlike others, she spent her evening sifting through direct messages and choosing 28 families to each receive $100 donations in honor of Kobe and Gianna Bryant, whose numbers 2 and 8 combine for 28.
“I know $100 is not a lot, but I don’t have a Kevin Love type of contract so I want to do what I can,” Ogwumike said, via the Los Angeles Times. “I just felt that was the right thing to do instead of spending $2,800 on a Chanel purse, which would be nice. This is what makes my heart feel better during this crazy time.”
Nets’ Kyrie Irving donates to Feeding America
On his 28th birthday, Nets guard Kyrie Irving announced he will donate $323,000 to Feeding America. Irving made the announcement on his Instagram.
The $323,000 amount signifies Irving’s birthday and is an homage to his late friend, Kobe Bryant.
— Howard Beck (@HowardBeck) March 23, 2020
Irving also said he and Feeding America have partnered together to distribute 250,000 meals across the New York City area.
Pirates players send 400 pizzas to feed staff at local hospital
Pittsburgh Pirates players found a brilliant way to support local businesses while helping the doctors, nurses, janitors, and administrative staff who are on the front lines of fighting the coronavirus. A group of players ordered 400 pizzas from two different local pizzerias on Monday and sent them to a local Pittsburgh hospital for lunch.
Pirates players purchased 400+ pizzas (plus pasta) from Slice on Broadway and Pizzeria Davide today and had it delivered to Allegheny General Hospital for lunch.
Players came up with the idea on their own to show support for hospital workers and a couple local businesses. pic.twitter.com/MGroxlS8bM
— Adam Berry (@adamdberry) March 23, 2020
This wasn’t an idea the Pirates organization came up with. The players hatched this and carried it out all on their own. Pitcher Jameson Taillon spoke on behalf of the players who helped organize the pizza delivery, and he was thrilled that they could help people in their community who may be hurting right now.
Pirates player rep Jameson Taillon: "We thought this was a way to help. Two birds with one stone. We can help local restaurants. We can help the hospitals and the workers and show our appreciation. We started throwing the idea around, and everyone got excited and made it happen."
— Adam Berry (@adamdberry) March 23, 2020
Browns owners pledge $1.5 million to COVID-19 relief in Ohio
On behalf of the Haslam family, Cleveland Browns owners Dee and Jimmy Haslam pledged $1.5 million to COVID-19 relief funds in the state of Ohio on Monday. $1 million will go to the Greater Cleveland COVID-19 Rapid Response Fund and $500,000 will go to the Columbus Foundation's Emergency Response Fund. The Cleveland fund is focusing on complementing the work already being done by public health officials, and the Columbus fund is focused on helping those who are experiencing financial difficulties during the pandemic.
Rams to host telethon to raise money for those impacted by virus
The Los Angeles Rams are going to host a virtual telethon Tuesday to benefit the LA Regional Food Bank and the United Way Pandemic Relief Fund.
Rams quarterback Jared Goff announced the telethon on the team’s Twitter page Sunday.
A message from @JaredGoff16.
Join us in helping our neighbors in need this Tuesday. All proceeds from our virtual teLAthon will benefit @LAFoodBank + @LAUnitedWay Pandemic Relief Fund.
Details » https://t.co/5Xz1SKSqny pic.twitter.com/LwMS1dKgJu
— Los Angeles Rams (@RamsNFL) March 22, 2020
All proceeds from the event — which will be held Tuesday — will go toward those two organizations. The Rams listed more information on their website, including how others can donate to the cause.
Adrian Peterson donates $100,000 to provide meals in Houston
Washington running back Adrian Peterson is helping people in his hometown. Peterson and his wife, Ashley, donated $100,000 to provide meals to students and seniors in Houston.
In our efforts to battle the COVID-19 outbreak in our hometown of Houston, we are donating $100,000 to further aid and support senior citizens and students.
We encourage everyone who is capable to pay it forward and help those in this critical time of need. #MealsByAAPFF pic.twitter.com/K4YbdvtoN0
— Adrian & Ashley Peterson Family Foundation (@AAPFFoundation) March 21, 2020
The Petersons donated to Meals on Wheels America and the Houston Independent School District Foundation. They also asked others to “pay it forward and help those in this critical time of need.”
Christian Pulisic announces donation to Feeding America
United States men’s national soccer team member Christian Pulisic is trying to help those in need. Pulisic, along with Tyler Adams and Weston McKennie, have donated to Feeding America.
Pulisic made that announcement in a video on Twitter.
— Christian Pulisic (@cpulisic_10) March 21, 2020
Perhaps more importantly, Pulisic challenged his USMNT teammates and members of the US women’s team and others to donate to the cause. We’ll see if Pulisic’s video starts a trend.
Zach LaVine donates 12,500 meals to the city of Seattle
Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine knows it’s important to remember where you can from. LaVine, 25, has decided to donate 12,500 meals to the city of Seattle amid the coronavirus pandemic.
LaVine — who grew up in Bothell, which is roughly 20 minutes away from Seattle — announced the news on Twitter.
I want to do my part and help my communities as much as I can during this difficult time. I’m starting off by committing 12,500 meals to the city of Seattle with @FeedingAmerica. As you know, I grew up here in Seattle and will always be #seattlestrong
— Zach LaVine (@ZachLaVine) March 21, 2020
LaVine is partnering with Feeding America to make the donation. Seattle is among the cities hit hardest by the coronavirus.
Steve Ballmer donates $1 million to fight coronavirus
Ballmer, 63, plans to distribute that money to a number of organizations. He donated $250,000 to the Los Angeles County Office of Education and to the Los Angeles Unified School District. As part of the donation, Ballmer will gives $100,000 to assist the homeless and $150,000 to an organization that supports low-income workers. Ballmer has not decided what to do with the remaining $250,000.
Ballmer has also pledged to donate $3 million to help those in the Seattle area. Ballmer made his fortune working for Microsoft in Seattle.
CBS to air classic March Madness games
If you’re still reeling over the news that there won’t be a college basketball tournament this year, CBS Sports is helping alleviate the pain. The “NCAA Tournament Rewind” starts Saturday at noon ET. Most of the slate is championship games, but the lone regional final is a doozy: Duke vs. Kentucky in 1992 ... aka when Christian Laettner etched “the shot” into fans’ memories forever.
The 1982 championship showdown between Georgetown and UNC is also slated — hard to turn down classic Michael Jordan.
The nostalgic weekend airings are a great reason to stock up on beer, snacks and feel a little bit of sports comfort.
This weekend, we’re bringing you some classic NCAA Tournament games on CBS. pic.twitter.com/EwNQIXp2GF
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) March 20, 2020
Luka Doncic, Mark Cuban, Dwight Powell join forces
Mark Cuban and two of his Dallas Mavericks players announced a $500,000 donation from the Mavericks Foundation to benefit “childcare for healthcare workers on the frontlines of the COVID-19 response effort during this unprecedented time.”
The money will help workers at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and Parkland Hospital.
The Dallas Mavericks announced today that Mark Cuban, Luka Dončić and Dwight Powell have teamed up with the Dallas Mavericks Foundation to donate $500,000 to support childcare for healthcare workers on the frontlines of the COVID-19 response effort during this unprecedented time. pic.twitter.com/6yBsKCs7f5
— Mavs PR (@MavsPR) March 20, 2020
Falcons’ Arthur Blank leads NFL donations with $5.4M
The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation announced Friday nearly $5.4 million in funding will go toward recovery assistance during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic.
The funds, spearheaded by Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank, will go toward organizations providing support throughout Georgia, where he also owns MLS club Atlanta United, and Montana, where he owns two ranches.
Meanwhile, Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper announced that he has donated $2.65 million “to help the local community in the face of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic” with proceeds benefiting the regional COVID-19 Response Fund, the Atrium Health Foundation, the Novant Health Foundation and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Foundation.
The Baltimore Ravens and owner Stephen Bisciotti have donated $1 million split between The Fund for Educational Excellence, the United Way of Central Maryland, the Baltimore Community Foundation and the Maryland Food Bank.
Larry Ogunjobi working with Cleveland Food Bank
Cleveland Browns defensive tackle Larry Ogunjobi announced on Friday that he’s partnering with the Cleveland Food Bank to donate 100,000 meals to people in need during the coronavirus pandemic while asking for others to chip in.
In light of the current circumstances, many people across the world need our help, especially children. I am supporting my local community in Cleveland by donating 100,000 meals with @clefoodbank.
Please join me in lending a helping hand and support @feedingamerica. pic.twitter.com/lJYiUqUVEE
— Larry Ogunjobi (@Mr_Ogunjobi) March 20, 2020
“No impact is too big or small, Ogunjobi said. “I encourage you to join me as well as many others as we help those in their time of need.”
Shaq surprises first-graders in online class
It’s been tough for everyone, but certainly for young children who don’t understand why their lives have suddenly halted. They no longer get to see their friends in person and have had to learn, along with teachers and parents, how to adjust to online teaching.
NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal decided to join one first-grade class this week and shocked both teach, parents and students alike with a simple “hello” on the video call. Their reactions were priceless.
Baby Stephen A. Smith is back
Thank you, filter gods, for always delivering when it comes to Stephen A. Smith. And we’re glad to see Smith embracing the baby filter, because it makes for incredible ESPN content.
Dropping another episode of Baby Stephen A pic.twitter.com/vQh1ILXYtO
— Stephen A Smith (@stephenasmith) March 18, 2020
Zlatan Ibrahimovic donates to Italy research hospital
AC Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who announced he was leaving the Los Angeles Galaxy last fall, started a GoFundMe to raise money for the medical professionals in Italy.
Ibrahimovic set a goal of approximately $1.1 million and himself donated more than $100,000. Teammates also donated.
In this dramatic moment for Italy, we created a fundraiser for Humanitas hospitals.I count on the generosity of my colleagues and of those who want to make even a small donation. Let’s together kick the CoronaVirus away and win this match! https://t.co/6o2cvUwEK6 pic.twitter.com/xhwECFFNTA
— Zlatan Ibrahimović (@Ibra_official) March 18, 2020
The money will go toward Humanitas to “help strengthen the intensive care emergency unites of Milano, Bergamo, Castellanza and Torino’s hospitals.” The pandemic has hit the county especially hard with more than 35,000 confirmed cases and 3,000 deaths as of Wednesday, per the BBC.
Kyle Kuzma helping seniors in Flint, Michigan
Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma headed home for his contributions amid the coronavirus crisis, partnering with the YMCA in Flint, Michigan to give more than 550 meals a week to seniors impacted by the virus.
The entire program will reportedly run for six weeks.
Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma says he is partnering with YMCA in Flint, Mich., to donate meals to seniors impacted by coronavirus pandemic. Program will provide dinner & a snack nightly starting March 23 and will run at least 6 weeks. Expected to provide more than 550 meals per week.
— Bill Oram (@billoram) March 19, 2020
Jason Heyward donates $200K to coronavirus relief
Chicago Cubs outfielder Jason Heyward joined the giving on Wednesday, donating $200,000 to charities helping soften the impact of the coronavirus outbreak.
$100,000 will reportedly fund supplies and meals for families affected by the virus, while $100,000 will go to the Greater Chicago Food Depository.
More good deeds from MLB players.
Chicago Cubs outfielder Jason Heyward plans to donate $200,000 to coronavirus relief in Chicago: $100,000 to MASK, which is collecting supplies and meals for families affected by the virus, and $100,000 to the Greater Chicago Food Depository.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) March 18, 2020
Freddie Freeman donates to food bank, Giving Kitchen and Salvation Army
Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman is making multiple donations to help those in the Atlanta area who are dealing with the fallout of the coronavirus. Freeman, 30, gave $50,000 to Atlanta Community Food Bank, $50,000 to Giving Kitchen — an organization that helps service workers — and $25,000 to the Salvation Army.
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) March 18, 2020
On Tuesday, Freeman’s division mate, Washington Nationals closer Sean Doolittle, also donated money to a food bank in the D.C. area. Doolittle and his wife, Eireann Dolan, donated $10,000.
League Pass and Game Pass are currently free
The NFL and NBA are doing their duty to help keep people in their in their homes during self-isolation announcing on Wednesday that their digital viewing platforms will be free for at least the next month. NFL Game Pass is free until May 31, and NBA League Pass is free until April 22.
Both platforms offer a mix of recent games, archived games, and additional content. In one day you could relive Super Bowl LII, and follow it with Zion Williamson’s NBA debut. Sign up for Game Pass on the NFL’s website, and League Pass on the NBA’s website.
Luis Rojas surprises devoted Mets fan with call after cancer diagnosis
A New York Mets fan named Ally Henglein took to Twitter to make a request of the Mets: could someone from the team call her grandmother, a longtime fan who was just diagnosed with terminal cancer?
— ally (@allyhenglein) March 17, 2020
Ally’s grandmother, Kathleen Selig, might be the biggest Mets fan out there. She’s been a fan since the team was founded in the 1960s, has traveled to see them play, talks about them all the time, and always wears Mets gear when she leaves the house. Ally wanted someone from the Mets to contact Kathleen to lift her spirits after the diagnosis, and thankfully the Mets didn’t let her down.
Update: Luis Rojas just gave my Gammy a call! She couldn’t hold back tears, she didn’t think it was real until she heard his voice💙🧡Thank you to the @Mets You gave my Gammy the strength she needs to get through this. https://t.co/KobRCM3Wcu
— ally (@allyhenglein) March 18, 2020
Mets manager Luis Rojas called Kathleen on Wednesday morning, and according to Ally’s tweet, Kathleen was so happy and overwhelmed that she started crying.
Russell Willson, Ciara donating one million meals to Seattle food bank
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and his wife Ciara are donating one million meals to a local Seattle food bank, Seattle Food LifeLine, to assist in the ongoing coronavirus relief efforts. The couple announced their generous donation in a video on Wilson’s Instagram.
Sean Doolittle, wife begin food bank donation campaign
Washington Nationals pitcher Sean Doolittle and his wife, writer and philanthropist Eireann Dolan, donated $10,000 to help the Capital Area Food Bank, the Washington, D.C. region’s largest hunger relief organization. The donation equates to about 25,000 meals, which the couple has asked fans to match.
$1 can make 2.5 meals so even a small donation can make a big impact. With kids out of school, many families can’t rely on school lunches and some parents aren’t able to work right now. @foodbankmetrodc also provides meals to seniors as well. (All while social distancing!)
— Obi-Sean Kenobi Doolittle (@whatwouldDOOdo) March 17, 2020
Doolittle and Dolan are asking for a total of 50,000 meals to be donated for the more than 400,000 children and families who face hunger in the region.
Lynx, Timberwolves pledge up to $1M for game-day staff
Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx owner Glen Taylor announced a relief fund of up to $1 million for part-time game day employees at Target Center, where the professional basketball teams play.
Led by Glen Taylor, the Timberwolves and Lynx have pledged to donate up to $1 million in a relief fund for the part-time gameday staff at Target Center. pic.twitter.com/btWIAPyLFx
— Minnesota Lynx (@minnesotalynx) March 17, 2020
The teams said in a statement they had been working to bring the plan to fruition this past week and it will provide financial assistance to “hundreds” of employees. The Timberwolves’ season is currently suspended. They had nine home games left on the schedule.
The Lynx’ season-opener is currently scheduled for May 15. The WNBA has said it is monitoring the situation, and will adjust accordingly as the season gets closer.
MLB teams pledge $1M each to ballpark employees
Each of the 30 MLB teams pledged $1 million on Tuesday to ballpark employees who will lose wages by the season being postponed.
"Motivated by desire to help some of the most valuable members of the baseball community, each club has committed $1 million," MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement given to ESPN.
Individual clubs will announce details around their pledges due to the need to coordinate around state and local laws, Manfred said. The Mariners announced their fund shortly before the league did. More than half of the known cases in the United States are in the state of Washington, per the New York Times, with Seattle and King County hit particularly hard.
Mar. 16: Sports arenas donate unused food to charities and shelters
With thousands of pounds of food at risk of going to waste, sports arenas across the country are finding a good use for them, according to Yahoo Sports’ Jeff Eisenberg.
Today along with our friends at @LevyRestaurants we donated 2,800 pounds of food to @urbangleaners that would have otherwise gone to waste due to recently canceled events. ❤️ pic.twitter.com/OtggD7hbXM
— Moda Center (@ModaCenter) March 14, 2020
We are grateful to our great education partners @SacramentoKings for donating perishable food for families impacted by coronavirus in @NatomasUSD @officialSCUSD & @TwinRiversUSD. District food services teams will package food and meals for families in need in those districts. pic.twitter.com/sZlHTHQltc
— Dave Gordon (@SuptDaveGordon) March 15, 2020
The arenas of the Los Angeles Lakers Brooklyn Nets, Golden State Warriors and more have donated incredible amounts of food, topped by the Atlanta Hawks sending 12,000 pounds to Goodr, an organization that aims to reduce waste and end hunger.
Zion Williamson catches up on reading with brother
The New Orleans Pelicans’ No. 1 pick has been busy with rehab and a rookie of the year campaign. But with the league suspended, he’s spending time with his little brother, Noah, and catching up on reading.
“There’s nothing like a good book, especially when reading to my little brother. We work hard all year long and although we want to be out on the court, it’s great to have quality family time. Stay home and be safe all.” -@Zionwilliamson pic.twitter.com/ib6cWx7Cjm
— NBA (@NBA) March 15, 2020
MLB, Stephen Curry donate to emergency food services
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced schools across the nation to close for weeks. Millions of children depend on the free breakfast and lunches they get while at school and districts are scrambling to make sure their students are fed.
Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry and his wife, Ayesha, announced that their foundation will donate to organizations in Oakland getting children meals while school is closed.
Utah Jazz star Donovan Mitchell also donated to the Granite School District in Salt Lake City.
“My mom’s career in education made me value children and the importance of academics, and I want to make sure that kids can continue to eat a meal while they can’t go to school,” he said in a statement.
MLB and the MLB Players Association announced a joint donation of $1 million split evenly between Feeding America and Meals on Wheels America. Funds will be distributed to member food banks in high need around the country to help feed children and families impacted, per the release. Meals on Wheels will also help provide in-home meals to vulnerable senior citizens.
NFL star J.J. Watt and NWSL star Kealia Ohai, who were married earlier this year, donated money for $1 million meals in Houston.
NWSL’s Red Stars design quarantine programming
The NWSL season is scheduled to begin on time in April, though preseason matches were canceled. But while everyone else is at home in quarantine, the Chicago Red Stars communications team has found a way to keep fans — er, their kids? — entertained.
— Chicago Red Stars (@chiredstarsPR) March 16, 2020
The night time bed story sounds quite comforting in these uncertain times. Head coach Rory Dames already picked out the book.
NBA players, teams start funds for workers
Kevin Love, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Zion Williamson and Blake Griffin are among the many players pledging money toward employees at their respective NBA arenas. Teams have joined in with funds to make sure the hourly workers don’t lose out on income due to the suspension.
Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban first pledged to help employees the night the league announced the move and Love put out a call to players the following day.
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