Suns’ Cam Payne receives NBA Cares Community Assist Award for December

Jan 28, 2023, 7:37 AM

Phoenix Suns point guard Cam Payne (center) receives the 2022 December NBA Cares Community Assist A...

Phoenix Suns point guard Cam Payne (center) receives the 2022 December NBA Cares Community Assist Award. (Twitter screenshot/@nbacares)

(Twitter screenshot/@nbacares)

The NBA announced on Thursday that Phoenix Suns point guard Cameron Payne was the recipient of the league’s Cares Community Assist Award for the month of December.

Payne was recognized on the court during pregame of Phoenix’s 99-95 loss to the Dallas Mavericks at Footprint Center on Thursday night.

“I have so much gratitude for the communities that have done so much for me and am trying my best to do whatever I can to give back,” Payne said in a press release.

“I’m thankful to the NBA for this recognition and to Phoenix Suns Charities for all the work they do. We’re not going to stop here. My hope is to continue to uplift these kids and to inspire the Valley to get involved themselves.”

Payne was given December’s edition of the award — which recognizes players who greatly give back to their communities — for his commitment to philanthropy over the course of the NBA Cares’ “Season of Giving.”

The Suns point guard hosted his second annual “Cam Payne’s 15 families of Christmas” initiative at Footprint Center where he provided dinner and gifts from the wishlists of 15 families from Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona. Each family also received a $250 Fry’s Food Stores gift card and was able to take photos with Payne, as well as get his autograph.

Payne’s December of giving back didn’t stop there, however, as he also took 20 kids from Arizona Friends of Foster Children Foundation and Solano’s No Limit Hoops shopping at Target as part of “Christmas Shopping with the Suns.”

The Memphis native also donated $10,000 to Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital in his hometown on Dec. 26.

Additionally, Payne hosted a Thanksgiving dinner this past November at Footprint Center, where 50 mentors and mentees from Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona got to eat a Payne family-served meal and dessert, as well as play arcade games, pop-a-shot and NBA 2K on the arena video board.

Big Brothers Big Sisters will receive a $10,000 donation from the NBA.

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