Giving back is essential in this dire time of need and New York Knicks legend Stephon Marbury is coming through in a big way!
According to the New York Post, the former point guard has arranged a deal that will sell 10 million face masks to New Yorkers for $2.75 each from a mask supplier in China. That price is almost a third of the $7.50 price that other retailers have been quoting for the N95 masks.
The former New Jersey Nets and New York Knicks player is now a coach for the Chinese Basketball Association’s Royal Fighters and still has family in Coney Island, Brooklyn, where he grew up. “At the end of the day, I am from Brooklyn,” Marbury told the New York Post in a phone call from his Beijing home. “This is something that is close and dear to my heart as far as being able to help New York.”
“I have family there in Coney Island, a lot of family … who are affected by this, so I know how important it is for people to have masks during this time.”
The Brooklyn native revealed that he got the idea last week after learning about New York’s low supply of masks and the extremely high price New York is paying for them and the state’s lack of protective gear. He decided to reach out to Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, who has backed Marbury’s local charities in the past, to let him know he wants to assist in getting the masks for the state.
Since China’s coronavirus pandemic has steadily gone down, the need for masks isn’t what it used to be during the peak of the outbreak over there. The connection that Marbury has in China has more N95s than that country presently needs, according to Brooklyn Borough Hall. The gear would be delivered 2 million at a time over five weeks.
Marbury, who was picked fourth overall in the 1996 NBA draft, played for 13 seasons with the New York Knicks, New Jersey (Now, Brooklyn) Nets, Minnesota Timberwolves, Phoenix Suns, and Boston Celtics before moving to China in 2009 and winning three Chinese Basketball Association titles with the Beijing Ducks.