While the NBA All-Star Game gives the league’s best players a chance to show off their above-the-rim skill sets, the annual showcase also provides them an opportunity to help the league’s charitable efforts.
Many of the players taking part in this week’s festivities spent part of Friday morning filling up backpacks for children at the NBA Cares All-Star Day of Service. Since the game is being played in Chicago, it only makes sense former President Obama was on hand to help out. Obama is a huge basketball fan, and many of the players at the event were thrilled to meet him.
Barack Obama is packing backpacks with Zion Williamson and Trae Young at the NBA Cares All-Star Day of Service. pic.twitter.com/HFrqrd4mLS— L.A. Times Sports (@latimessports) February 14, 2020
Zion Williamson and Trae Young, who were among the contingent of players taking part in the event ahead of Friday night’s NBA Rising Stars game, said they were surprised to see Obama. Both were excited about getting the chance to meet him and seemingly impressed with his knowledge of their respective careers.
Zion Williamson talks about meeting Barack Obama and how surprised he was that he knew everything about his career from Duke to New Orleans. pic.twitter.com/2uwlbxcFzS— L.A. Times Sports (@latimessports) February 14, 2020
Trae Young had so many questions when he saw Barack Obama but he was surprised the president had more questions for him about his season. pic.twitter.com/ieOQw6kvwP— L.A. Times Sports (@latimessports) February 14, 2020
Lakers coach Frank Vogel described the experience of meeting Obama as “surreal.”
Barack Obama asked Frank Vogel’s daughter how L.A. is compared to Indiana. pic.twitter.com/9RvJ0ki8ze— L.A. Times Sports (@latimessports) February 14, 2020
Barack Obama meeting Luka Dončić and Jason Kidd. “Don’t listen to him when it comes to shooting,” he told Luka. 😂 pic.twitter.com/ANCpSM0d4Z— L.A. Times Sports (@latimessports) February 14, 2020
Times columnist Arash Markazi is providing a behind-the-scenes look at the NBA All-Star Game this weekend. Be sure to follow @latimessports for Markazi’s latest updates.