Basketball Hall of Fame announces new Ice Cube Impact Award
SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - Some big news came out of the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame on Tuesday and it includes honoring one legendary rapper’s impact on and off the court.
You could say “Today was a Good Day” for rapper Ice Cube.
“Never in my wildest dreams did I think that I would ever have an award named after me at the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame,” Ice Cube explained.
The star is now getting honored for his work, not in the recording studio, but on an entirely different stage or, rather, court. He’s now the namesake and first recipient of the Ice Cube Impact Award, a recognition based on the superstar’s work to make the game he loves a more inclusive environment for all.
“Sports is something I’ve always enjoyed and I’ve always understood the significance of sports,” Ice Cube noted.
However, the organization’s partnership with the star doesn’t stop there. The national award will be housed permanently in downtown Springfield in a new exhibit not only honoring the actor’s contribution to the game in media and by creating his own BIG3 league that tours across the country with former NBA superstars and coaches, but with other recipients who are expected to follow.
“We’re just so happy that he loves the game so much and he thinks so much of the Basketball Hall of Fame to want to do this project,” said Basketball Hall of Fame President and CEO John Doleva.
Doleva told us what this new collaboration and award means for basketball lovers across the globe, going above and beyond to highlight the importance of the Springfield-originated game, like Ice Cube.
“He’s setting the criteria, right now, but it really is someone in a community that’s dedicated their time, their spare time, someone who’s made a real impact to elevate basketball programs, provide a safety net for kids, using basketball as a real catalyst in the community,” Doleva noted.
In the future, you’ll be able to nominate a community member who is going above the rim to bring basketball to all. That process is still in the works.
The trophy and new exhibit will be coming soon. Ice Cube will be in the City of Firsts during the first month of 2024 to receive the accolade during the Hoop Hall Classic weekend.
Copyright 2023. Western Mass News (WGGB/WSHM). All rights reserved.