Phoenix Suns guard and 75th Anniversary Team member Chris Paul won the first-ever Kobe & Gigi Bryant WNBA Advocacy Award for his contributions and support for girls and women’s basketball.
Vanessa Bryant and WNBA commissioner Cathy Engelbert presented the award to Paul, joined by his daughter Camryn, at the All-Star game Sunday night in Cleveland.
— WNBA (@WNBA) February 21, 2022
The 36-year-old has attended WNBA games and purchased 500 tickets to dole out to fans for a Phoenix Mercury playoff game last season.
He also supports girls’ hoops through camps and the CP3 Basketball Academy.
“This games means so much to me and my family… to receive this award is an absolute honor. My daughter recently started hooping and while I’m excited for her, I’m most excited for the future of the sport,” Tweeted Paul.
This games means so much to me and my family… to receive this award is an absolute honor. My daughter recently started hooping and while I’m excited for her, I’m most excited for the future of the sport. (1/2) pic.twitter.com/rfCWnrv51N
— Chris Paul (@CP3) February 21, 2022
“I have seen first-hand Chris’ appreciation of the WNBA and the game at every level for women and girls, especially in Phoenix and North Carolina, and his ardent support of our game strongly reflects the legacy of Kobe and Gigi,” said WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert, per NBA.com. “The league is proud to name Chris as the inaugural recipient of the Kobe & Gigi Bryant WNBA Advocacy Award, as he serves as a leader and role model for other professional athletes around growing the future of the game for young girls and all fans.”
The WNBA will also make a donation to the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation.
Bryant was a longtime supporter of women’s basketball.
He and his daughter Gigi died in a helicopter crash on January 26, 2020.
It was a night of mixed emotions for Paul.
The 12-time All-Star played just over two minutes in the game after it was announced earlier that he had suffered a right thumb avulsion fracture and will be re-evaluated in six to eight weeks per Shams Charania.
Paul sustained the injury during the third quarter of Phoenix’s win over Houston Wednesday.
The Suns are 48-10 with the best record in the league.