Once again, the Big Man is teaming up with one of his corporate partners to help young people in two different communities at almost opposite ends of the nation. Shaq and Icy Hot are announcing the donation of $1 for each product sold to help build basketball courts in two neighborhoods – one in Newark, New Jersey and the other in Las Vegas.
In addition to the fundraising through Icy Hot, Shaq will be holding a live fundraiser on the online gaming platform Twitch on October 18. Of course they’ll be playing NBA 2K22®. Along with Shaq will be gaming superstars Aerial Powers and Nicholas Amyoony.
A press release from The Shaquille O’Neal Foundation says the goal is to help kids within underserved communities get back in the game on local basketball courts. Icy Hot says it will contribute up to $300,000 from the $1.00 per-sale of its products to help what the Foundation is calling Comebaq Courts. The plan is to rebuild and refurbish hoops courts that could use some sprucing-up, such as refurbished and freshly designed blacktop, baskets, and other more.
In a recent interview, Shaq said, “I’m thrilled to help continue Icy Hot’s commitment to young athletes, extending our work last year with the Get Game Ready program. This collaboration between Icy Hot and The Shaquille O’Neal Foundation to create Comebaq Courts will allow athletes and communities to rise from the struggles of the last year and get back in the game – right in their own backyards.”
With ongoing budget and other issues, not all communities nationwide have the resources available to rebuild healthy places for kids to play. According to the Aspen Institute, local athletic programs that typically serve youth in large numbers won’t be able to recover at the same pace as larger, organized student sports teams with private resources.
The company that makes Icy Hot is an international conglomerate called Sanofi. “We could not be more thrilled to partner with The Shaquille O’Neal Foundation for this exciting and worthwhile endeavor of revitalizing healthy places to play, so athletes in underserved communities can get back in the game,” said Alberto Hernandez, Head of Pain and Sleep, US Consumer Health at Sanofi.
“Our mission has always been to help young athletes rise from pain. As we enter this new normal, we’re committed to helping the Las Vegas and Newark communities return to play and are excited to leverage one of young athletes’ favorite downtime activities to do it – gaming.”
The court unveiling in Las Vegas will be held on Saturday, October 23. The Newark court will be unveiled at a later date during Fall 2021. For more details on Comebaq Courts or the online Icy Hot x NBA 2K22 Charity Game Twitch event, visit IcyHot.com/GetBackInTheGame.