Pro all-star game to benefit Saugus set for Sunday

Professional basketball players from across the map will converge on Sunday as Golden Valley boys basketball and Statham Academy, a basketball training program based in Santa Clarita, will be hosting a Pro All-Star Game.

The game is scheduled for 4 p.m. at Golden Valley High School and all proceeds from the event will be donated to those affected by the events of Nov. 14 at Saugus High School.

Taylor Statham, founder of Statham Academy and former Golden Valley basketball player, said that he wanted to organize something to help Saugus as soon as he had heard what happened.

“When it initially happened, I was in the middle of a workout and I remember, like, I couldn’t believe it and then I just thought about all the kids I trained at Saugus and hoping they’re okay,” he said. “I saw how it affected our community and I was planning an all-star game for the boys and girls club, something I do every year and then I just thought, what if I just made it bigger?”

Admission to the event is $5, although attendees are encouraged to donate more. Proceeds will go to Saugus High School and its wellness center, which supports students’ well-being and mental health.

“Mental health is a pretty big thing,” Statham said. “My brother goes through clinical depression so just seeing him has really hit home for me because it’s so close and it affects so many families near us.”

Statham, who also plays professional basketball, reached out to his networks of fellow pro players to see who would be interested. He received interest from overseas players, NBA G League players, Venice Beach League and more.

Although they won’t be participating due to the upcoming season, prep players from around the Santa Clarita Valley will also be in attendance for the event. In addition to Golden Valley, Santa Clarita Christian School and Valencia are in support of the event.

Statham plans to have a dunk contest during the all-star game’s halftime break as well as raffles.

“I just want to make it really fun and exciting,” he said. “Everybody can watch and watch all these guys throwing out crazy dunks. Something to unite the community the basketball community, all the programs for a greater good.”

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