— Team Challenge ALS (@TMchallengeALS) April 3, 2017
The Basketball Tournament is simple. Professional basketball players put together their own teams and play in the annual summer tournament with $2 million in prize money to split between them should they win the championship.
But it’s not all about the money.
Often, the winners have spent the winnings on a noble cause.
Last year, Overseas Elite won the title and its MVP, former Arizona Wildcat Kyle Fogg put money into building a school in Ghana by fundraising for the “Pencils of Promise” program.
Fogg’s team is back in the finals this year, and Thursday they’ll be facing a team that’s also hoping to use the winnings for good.
The opponent, Team Challenge ALS, is fighting for the grand prize with quite the motivation. They want to pay $275,000 in medical costs for Peter Frates, who suffers from the illness also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, reports the New York Post.
Frates was one of the first to take part in the Ice Bucket Challenge, the social media phenomenon that raised ALS awareness.
The 32-year-old’s former Boston College roommate, Sean Marshall, put together the team this year.
“This team plays so hard and I think it’s because we’re playing for a cause,’’ Marshall said after Tuesday’s double-overtime victory over the Ohio State alumi squad. “It’s a good group of guys and that was most important thing going through the recruiting process was bringing in high character guys. As they did their own research on it and saw how terrible the disease was, it was easy to jump on board.”
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