The NBA on Friday announced the five finalists for the inaugural Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion award.
Portland Trail Blazers forward Carmelo Anthony, Sacramento Kings forward Harrison Barnes, Philadelphia 76ers forward Tobias Harris, Milwaukee Bucks guard Jrue Holiday and Golden State Warriors forward Juan Toscano-Anderson were selected by a committee that included the award’s namesake, the six-time NBA champion and the league’s all-time leading scorer.
The award “recognizes a current NBA player for pursuing social justice and advancing Abdul-Jabbar’s life mission to engage, empower and drive equality for individuals and groups who have been historically marginalized or systemically disadvantaged,” according to a news release from the NBA.
The winner will be announced prior to Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals on TNT.
Each finalist has selected an organization focused on advancing social justice. The winning player’s organization will receive a $100,000 donation and the other finalists’ causes will each receive $25,000.
In addition to Abdul-Jabbar, the selection committee included Director of The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport Dr. Richard Lapchick, student activist Teyonna Lofton, National Urban League President and CEO Marc Morial, UnidosUS President and CEO Janet Murguia, Rise Founder and CEO Amanda Nguyen, and NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum.
–Field Level Media