BARKLEY ANTE’S UP FOR AFRICA
The 2008 Ante Up For Africa Poker Tournament at the World Series of Poker will be held on July 2 at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. The event, which raises money and awareness for the crisis in the Darfur region of Sudan, raised more than $700,000 last year, and this year, you can expect them to raise even more…thanks in part to Sir Charles Barkley, who kept good on his “not gambling” promise during the Pro Team Sports Challenge despite the fact that the event was held, in part, at a casino. “We were at a casino and he said he was on the wagon,” said Jason Kidd, a participant in the Pro Team Challenge. “He’s strong. He didn’t gamble. I think Charles, once he decides not to do something, I think he’s pretty good at keeping his word.” Barkley has pledged to donate all of his winnings to one of the two designated charities if he wins the event in Vegas…Past celebrities, athletes and poker professionals giving some love to Darfur via the Ante Up For Africa Poker Tournament include: Ben Affleck, Jason Alexander, Hank Azaria, Don Cheadle, Matt Damon, Cheryl Hines, Mekhi Phifer, Ray Romano, Adam Sandler, Martin Sheen, Donnie Wahlberg, Montel Williams, Doyle Brunson, Annie Duke, Antonio Esfandiari, Chris Ferguson, Jamie Gold, Phil Gordon, Barry Greenstein, Joe Hachem, Jennifer Harman, Phil Hellmuth, Phil Ivey, Howard Lederer, Mike Matusow, Daniel Negreanu, and many others.
STEVE NASH CLEATS UP FOR CHARITY
Steve Nash is taking off his sneakers and putting on some cleats to take part in the “Showdown in Chinatown” celebrity soccer match for charity. The face-off, which includes New York Red Bulls midfielder Claudio Reyna along with celebrity athletes from two of the most beautiful games in the world-soccer and basketball- takes place in New York City on June 25. Nash and Reyna will be joined by former Liverpool FC stars Steve McManaman and Robbie Fowler as well as NBA players Raja Bell (R), Leandro Barbosa, Nate Robinson and David Lee.
LUOL DENG: WHAT A MIGHTY FINE MAN
His name should be familiar to you if you’ve been a regular reader of mine…Chicago Bull Luol Deng. Remember his name. He’s one of the good guys-right alongside Dikembe Mutombo, Steve Nash and Yao Ming-in terms of really, really making a difference in this world, but specifically for his work with the NineMillion.org campaign. Deng has been a staunch supporter of the cause, donating $50 for every basket he scored to the organization that helps more than nine million refugee children gain better access to education, technology and everything else we take for granted.
Today, Deng, who is a former refugee from Sudan, will receive the 2008 UN Refugee Agency’s Humanitarian of the Year Award at World Refugee Day in Washington, D.C. ”I am honored to receive the UNHCR’s ‘Humanitarian of the Year’ Award,” Deng said. “Giving back is important to me. The ninemillion.org campaign is a cause that is very close to my heart, and I am committed to helping refugees make a new life for themselves.”
As always, thanks for reading.