Victor Oladipo will surely be the fan favorite in Saturday's dunk contest. The Magic guard has decided to donate a portion of his prize money, win or lose, to three different cancer charities.
"I wanted to give back," Oladipo told The Associated Press. "I feel like that's the type of human being I am — first and foremost — just to give back to people who are not as fortunate as me. I'm all about making a difference, and I felt that was the best way to do so."
The contest winner $100,000 and the runner-up gets $50,000. The third and fourth place finishers each get $20,000.
Oladipo will donate some of the money to a pediatric cancer center in Washington, D.C. Another portion will go to the breast cancer research center at Indiana University, his alma mater. Oladipo will also give to Florida Hospital Cancer Institute, the facility that Magic executive Pat Williams helped build after he was diagnosed with an incurable but treatable form of cancer.
Oladipo said the donation makes him want to win that much more.
"It's not even the pressure, it's just extra motivation," he said. "We gotta get this done because it's for a better cause."
- Dan Gartland