The competition is called “Viktre Challenge: Power for Puerto Rico” and is being administered by Viktre — a notable online platform for athletes. The campaign started earlier this week and will pit athletes such as former Orlando City star Kaka, current MLS star David Villa, Puerto Rican Hall of Fame tennis player Gigi Fernandez and decorated Winter Olympian Apolo Ohno in a friendly month-long competition to raise money for Puerto Rico.
According the event organizers, fans will have the opportunity to interact, donate and potentially meet their favorite athlete as part of the campaign. If the fundraising goal is met several micro grids will be installed, resulting in sustainable, storm resistant power in Puerto Rico.
If you want to help out and get involved, go to ViktreChallenge.com.
But at the very least, let’s recognize the good guys in sports today — guys like Davey and Kaka, who use their platform to do something for the greater good. And guys like J.J. Watt, who raised nearly $40 million for the Hurricane Harvey relief effort in Houston.
Seriously, don’t you get tired of picking up the sports page or clicking on your favorite sports site and getting bombarded with stories of abuse — sexual abuse, spousal abuse, drug abuse? Controversy? Consternation? Conflict?
On OrlandoSentinel.com on Wednesday afternoon, the lead story was of FSU quarterback Deondre Francois involved in a domestic dispute with his pregnant ex-girlfriend.
There was also a story about four Florida Gator football players being reinstated to the team after facing credit card fraud charges
And another story on a new book written about former Gator and convicted murderer Aaron Hernandez.
And then, of course, the most sickening story of all: Dr. Larry Nassar, the deranged Team USA gymnastics doctor, being sentenced to 175 years in prison for molesting some of the nation’s top gymnasts under the guise of medical treatment.
So much for the sports page being the place you go when you want to escape the real word. Sadly, these days, the real world is sometimes where you go to escape the madness of the sports world.
When Doc Rivers was coaching the Magic several years ago, he, too, was starting to become bothered by the many good guys in sports being overshadowed by the few bad apples.
“You don’t hear a whole lot about athletes who give,” Doc told me then. “I remember when David Robinson gave $5 million to charity. You didn’t see it on TV much, but I’ll bet if he’d stolen $5 million, you’d have heard all about it.”
Today, we’re giving the good guys top billing for a change.
Today, we celebrate and commemorate those who are helping the helpless and giving hope to the hopeless.
Way to go, Don Davey.
Way to go, Kaka.
Way to go, all of you professional athletes who aren’t just out to make a buck but are actually trying to make a difference.
If you have the inclination, spread the word of their good deeds.
Tell your friends.
Tweet out their causes.
Power for Puerto Rico.