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Big sports bring big money. That’s a given. And if an athlete manages to hold his ground in the cutthroat competition of professional sports and gets a couple of championships under his belt then not only does he become legendary but also a millionaire. If you’ve ever bought Cheap Sports Tickets from popular website TicketVistas and seen some of these world class athletes in action, up close and personal, then one thing will become quickly evident that they work hard for the money, and the fame and glory that come with it. To give away some of that money for which they’ve literally spilled sweat and blood drilling through endless training sessions just to make someone’s life a little easier is a phenomenal gesture that cannot exactly be praised in words.
Here’s a look at some of the most giving athletes on the planet that have used their vast fortune and celebrity influence to help those in need:
He was known simply as “The Admiral” during his days in the NBA winning championships for the San Antonia Spurs. But in addition to being one of the greatest centers in basketball history, David Robinson is also a seriously generous dude. In 1997, Robinson donated a staggering $5 million to establish a college prep academy in an economically challenged San Antonia neighborhood. But he didn’t stop at $5 million. In fact, to date, David Robinson and his wife have donated over $11 million to Carver Academy.
In November 2007, on the day he announced his official retirement, former NHL all-star and MVP EricLindros also announced that he would be making a $5 million dollar donation to the London Health Sciences Centre in London, Ontario. Lindros was born at the hospital, and over the course of his career had numerous procedures performed there. What’s worth mentioning here is that NHL players don’t make as much money as their NBA, NFL or MLB counterparts. $5 million is a huge sum for a hockey player.
Even though it’s not clear how much money the former Tampa Bay Buccaneer player donated to charity, however, what is clear is that he helped several people by making down payments homes. Inspired by his mother and former cop who was killed while working as a security guard to provide for her family, his Homes for the Holidays program aims to help single parents provide a home for their families.
He used to be known mostly for his trademark “no, no, no” finger wag after blocking shots, but now former NBA Defensive Player of the Year DikembeMutombo is better known for his amazing dedication to charity. In 1997 he founded the DikembeMutombo Foundation to improve the lives of people in his native Democratic Republic of Congo. Since 2001 he has donated at least $15 million dollars to build a hospital in his hometown of Kinshasa. That’s putting your enormous salary to good use.
The top name on this list hails from an age when professional athletes were not multimillionaires. So being “charitable” back then meant more than just giving money. It meant giving of yourself, and using your celebrity status to draw attention to the plight of others. One of the greatest baseball players and one of the most important philanthropists of all time is the Pittsburgh Pirates’ Roberto Clemente.
Clemente worked tirelessly to bring money, food, and other desperately needed goods to poor people in his native Puerto Rico, as well as elsewhere in Latin America. And if he wasn’t delivering goods, he was holding baseball clinics for children. Roberto Clemente died at the age of 37. He was bringing food and supplies to help victims of a terrible earthquake in Nicaragua when his plane crashed. Though shocking and tragic, his death was fitting. Today, Major League Baseball’s humanitarian award is named the Roberto Clemente award.
These phenomenal athletes have led by example. Not only was their athletic prowess unmatched but their charitable efforts are commendable as well.