Maybe you’ve heard of Minnesota Timberwolves guard Zach LaVine, known for his monster dunks.
He’s the kind of guy who can do stuff like this.
So it probably shouldn’t come as a big surprise that he won the NBA’s Slam Dunk Contest for the second year in a row.
Even better? He took $10,000 of his slam dunk prize money and donated it to the Metro Deaf School in St. Paul, Minnesota.
After getting drafted by the Timberwolves in 2014, he was on the lookout for a way to give back to the community. As it turns out, LaVine took American Sign Language classes in high school and college, and what he learned there made him want to help the MDS.
The school didn’t have a kitchen, so LaVine donated his dunk contest winnings to build one.
Not only that, but he was there on the first day helping serve the school’s students:
“The biggest part for me growing up was interacting with kids during lunch time and recess,” he told ESPN. “They get all their meals catered in. I just thought it would be cool for them to be able to socialize and be able to hang out with each other, eat food together, instead of having to sit in class and eat.”
The kids were surprised to learn LaVine knew sign language, making him an even bigger hero in their minds.
“The kids were like, ‘He knows how to sign!'” Susan Lane-Outlaw, the school’s executive director, told ESPN. “That’s the biggest thing. He knows American Sign Language. I think the kids connect with that. From there it just blossomed.”
It’s always cool when athletes give back to the local community, but this was truly a *ahem* slam-dunk move on his part.
Way to go, Zach LaVine! Good on you!