In honor of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's legendary basketball career and to celebrate the much-anticipated statue that will be unveiled by the Los Angeles Lakers in-front of the Staples Center Star Plaza on November 16th, multi-talented entertainer George Lopez, whose career encompasses television, film, stand-up comedy and late-night television, will host a celebrity roast tonight, November 17th at the JW Marriott L.A. LIVE and Ritz-Carlton in Los Angeles. On hand to join Lopez for the honors will be a Who's Who of sports icons and celebrity guests, presenters and performers including Earvin "Magic" Johnson, the "Showtime" Lakers and many more. Additional information about the event can be found at www.skyhookfoundation.org/kaj.
This is the first time the basketball icon, best-selling author, humanitarian and cultural ambassador will be roasted. Since his retirement as a player, Mr. Abdul-Jabbar has devoted himself to projects focused on African American history and education.
The Celebrity Roast will also serve as the kick-off to a national multi-city tour called the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Experience. Presented by The Skyhook Foundation will feature a never-before-seen 300+ piece traveling exhibit of memorabilia from all segments of Abdul-Jabbar's life and professional career and will benefit the Skyhook Foundation and STEM Education (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics). Generous support provided by Wells Fargo.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is one of basketball's greatest players of all time. The 7-foot-2 Hall of Fame center, famous for his indefensible skyhook, dominated the NBA for 20 years, first with the Milwaukee Bucks then with the Los Angeles Lakers. Kareem was the NBA's MVP six times, a 19-time All-Star and set the NBA all-time records in nine categories. He is the NBA's all-time leading scorer with 38,387 points. Prior to his stellar professional career he was the star of the UCLA Bruins teams that won three consecutive NCAA championships and was named the only player in the 75-year history of the NCAA to be named the Most Valuable Player of the Tournament three years in row.
After retiring as a player in 1989 Kareem authored of seven best-selling books intended to popularize the contributions of African-Americans to American culture and history. His books include Kareem; Giant Steps; "Black Profiles in Courage: A Legacy of African-American Achievement"; "Brothers in Arms: The Epic Story of the 761st Tank Battalion, WWII's Forgotten Heroes"; "A Season on the Reservation," which chronicles his time teaching basketball and history on an Apache Indian reservation in White River, Ariz.; "On the Shoulders of Giants: My Journey Through the Harlem Renaissance," as well as his first children's book, "What Color is My World, The Lost History of African-American Inventors." He is currently writing three new children's books for Disney's Hyperion which are based on a basketball street gang and publishes in 2013.
Founded by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, the mission of the Skyhook Foundation is to raise the academic aspirations of students by connecting them with mentors who are equipped to motivate and engage under-serve youth to reach their potential. By developing a deep understanding of careers outside of sports and entertainment, we excite students about the possibilities of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics) careers and open a world of opportunities for their future. For more info, go to www.skyhookfoundation.org.