Since arriving in Memphis the Grizzlies basketball team has been a staple in the community.
As part of Hoops for St. Jude week, several members of the Grizzles visited St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
There were cupcakes and smiles as several children got a chance to get up close and personal with some new members of the Grizzlies. Monday's visit kicked off a week of activity for where the Grizzlies organization show their love for St. Jude.
Monday's visit wasn't nothing new or out of the ordinary for veteran Grizzlies like Marc Gasol, who looks forward to every trip he takes there.
"It was cupcake day," Gasol said. "We were reading books. They were doing paintings and we even had a tea party. So we just had fun."
But it was a new experience in Memphis for John Leuer, Austin Day, Ed Davis and Dexter Pittman, four new Grizzlies who were recently acquired in trades.
"It's good especially when you do stuff like this that is for a great cause and especially when it's involving kids it's always a great thing," Davis said. "Like I said earlier, it's very humbling and it's something I can look forward to doing it for many years to come."
"Coming back and giving back to kids like this that are fighting for more than money, or a championship, they are fighting for their lives," Pittman said. "Just coming here being near them and giving them hope and excitement brings joy to me."
It's not uncommon for other NBA teams to visit St. Jude while in town to face the Grit-n-Grind Grizzlies, but when you are a part of the Memphis team, it's more than just a quick stop for a photo opportunity.
The team truly cares about the community that supports them, something veteran Gasol helps to make sure his new teammates embrace.
"We had an opportunity to introduce our new teammates to the St. Jude family and it's just a great day," Gasol said.
"I just enjoyed my time here," David added. ;Just interacting with them getting to know them, just had a fun time."
On Wednesday the Grizzlies will host Hoops For St. Jude Night when they play against Dallas at FedExForum. Prior to the 7 p.m. start, Gasol will present a donation to a St. Jude representative.
"We got to make the kids feel healthy and normal which they are," Pittman said. "They are just going through obstacles in their life and they will overcome it."
"Just try to keep your head up and fight through all the tough times because there is sure to be brighter days ahead," added Day.
WHBQ-TV | Fox 13
Didn't find what you were looking for?