Via Kevin Ding OCRegister.com
After the Lakersâ€™ team plane landed in Memphis on Monday, Coach Mike Brown and forward Pau Gasol headed over to spend some time with the patients and their families at St. Jude Childrenâ€™s Research Hospital.
The visit was just the latest of many for Gasol, who frequently stopped by the hospital as far back as his rookie NBA season in 2001-02 with the Grizzlies. It was just another example of Gasol forging on through rumors and embracing reality with the NBA trade deadline nearing Thursday, and that is the theme ofÂ my latest column about Gasolâ€™s season.
The event served as a prelude toÂ Hoops for St. JudeÂ week March 26-30, when NBA players will raise funds for the hospital where no child is denied treatment based on the familyâ€™s inability to pay. The hospital has played a pivotal role in pushing U.S. pediatric cancer survival rates from 20 to 80 percent overall.
One of the highlights of the event was when the children asked Brown and Gasol why Ron Artest changed his name to Metta World Peace. Brown wound up whipping out his cell phone, calling World Peace and letting a patient named KeShaun ask him the question directly â€” and get the answer that World Peace wanted a name that was more inspiring to people.
View a video of Coach Brown and Gasol at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital :Â here
Learn more atÂ www.hoopsforstjude.org