D-Fenders Visit Palms Middle School's Team Prime Time

The Los Angeles D-Fenders began their community outreach this week with a visit to Palms Middle School and their afterschool athletic mentoring program Team Prime Time. This visit was part of the NBA D-Leagues Community Caravan Give Back Week, where in a combined effort to promote the tip off of the season, the league and teams will participate in hands on service oriented community events throughout the week that highlight our continued commitment to the communities in which we live, learn and play.

Team Prime Time is a Los Angeles area non-profit organization and their mission is to, “provide intervention programs for at-risk children from low-income areas of Los Angeles that combine academics, athletics, leadership training and the arts in order to prepare them for the future and allow them to reach their full potential.” Through this program the middle school students are mentors to children with special needs and each Wednesday they get together to coach, play and compete in basketball or soccer.

“The athletics really become secondary to the lessons that these middle school children are taught on a daily basis; leadership, accountability and patience.” Alison Tolladay, D-Fenders Community Relations Coordinator described about Team Prime Time. “The skills that these mentors obtain through this program will stay with them their entire life.”

When three of the D-Fenders players, Anthony Gurley, Troy Payne and Franklin Session, learned of this program they took time out of their busy Training Camp schedule to see this program in action. On the particular Wednesday that they visited the kids, they were competing in their Team Prime Time Games. The Games give the kids the opportunity to show how much they have learned about their particular sport and it is their time to shine.

The D-Fenders players interacted with the middle school mentors as they described what they do at Team Prime Time. Peter Straus, the Director of the program, encouraged the players to begin a dialogue with the mentors. The kids did not have a shortage of information they wanted to share about their program and what they have learned by being a mentor.

“My favorite part about today was going out and seeing the kids at Team Prime Time. I like the fact that they are giving back to their peers that are less fortunate. The best thing about life is giving back.” D-Fenders player Troy Payne says about his experience with Team Prime Time. “It is great that they have this program in middle school. A lot of kids don’t know the significance of that and it is something that I love to see and I appreciate it.”

Thank you Team Prime Time for allowing us to come and visit you. Keep up the fantastic work!

View a photo gallery from the event..