The NBA has created the annual Kareem Abdul-Jabbar award to recognize a current player for pursuing social justice and upholding the league’s values of equality, respect, and inclusion.
Introducing the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion Award, a new annual honor that will recognize a current NBA player for pursuing social justice and upholding the league’s decades-long values of equality, respect and inclusion. pic.twitter.com/a0A7xqg6uU
— NBA (@NBA) May 13, 2021
All teams in the NBA will nominate one player from their roster to the award and five will be chosen as the finalists. The winner will receive a $100,000 contribution to an organization of his choosing. As for the other four finalists, they will receive $25,000 each for the organization they choose.
Jabbar, a recipient of the medal of honor in 2016 for his social contributions, has been an advocate for social justice from even before his playing days started. In 2009, he founded the Skyhook Foundation to provide STEM education opportunities to underserved communities.
Following comes from Abdul-Jabbar in the league’s press release:
“I’m honored and grateful to be associated with this award that will recognize the dedicated and selfless people fighting to promote social justice for all marginalized people. To me, it’s another giant step in the right direction for the country and all people who value equality.”
Before the season restarted in the Disney Bubble, Jrue Holiday donated the remainder of his salary, up to $5.3 million, to start a social Impact Fund, and during the past season’s playoffs, two days of games were postponed when the players unite to protest the shooting of Jacob Blake by the police in Kenosha Wisconsin.
Since the murder of George Floyd, the fight for social justice has been in the mind of all the athletes in the NBA.
Jaylen Brown and Malcolm Brogdon marched with the people in Atlanta yesterday
— Def Pen Hoops (@DefPenHoops) May 31, 2020