Saskatoon shoots hoops to fight cystic fibrosis
The annual Hoops for Hope three-on-three basketball tournament is now in its seventh year.
Gavin King has entered in the tournament each and every year and wouldn’t miss the event for the world.
“I love basketball so much, but when we get to play basketball with a chance to really make a difference in the world, that’s something I’m super passionate about,” King said.
“This is my favorite day of the year.”
King and his team are one of 53 groups that took to the court on Saturday at the Market Mall parking lot.
“Every year we make more money, every year, there’s more teams. There’s more teams here than ever,” King said.
Together, the teams raised close to $70,000 for cystic fibrosis (CF) support care and research.
For the first time, there was a wheelchair division added to the tournament.
Shaun Nechvatal and his wife Katarina started the annual tournament in 2010. It started for the Nechvatal family when their third child, Dominic, was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis in 2008.
The family created the basketball event in an effort to make a difference in the lives of other families affected by the inherited, fatal disease.
Last summer, the family welcomed another son, Benjamin, who would also be diagnosed with cystic fibrosis at just three weeks old.
“One day, we would like just to have a cure for CF, so nobody else has to endure the hours of treatment, the enzymes, the therapies and the hospital admissions which are all part of this genetic fatal disease,” Shaun Nechvatal said.
According to the family, Dominic and Benjamin each spend two hours or more each day on therapies and treatment for their CF, but said they find hope from the local event.
“The basketball community has really come out in full force. We have families with three of their kids all in the event participating and raising funds,” Nechvatal said.
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