Warriors And Lucky Partner Up For "Shop With A Warrior"
Warriors players Festus Ezeli, Draymond Green, Richard Jefferson, Carl Landry and Assistant Coach Michael Malone accompanied families while shopping for Thanksgiving Dinner

The Golden State Warriors tipped off their 15 Plays for the Holidays community outreach initiative this week as part of the NBA’s Season of Giving with the Shop with a Warrior event. For this year’s Holiday Season, the Warriors are teaming up to help brighten the lives of local families and youth. Each of the Warriors’ 15 players will participate in at least one event during the holiday season to help those in need in the community.

On Monday, November 12, five families received a terrific jump start to the 2012 holiday season with the 2nd annual Shop with a Warrior holiday event, presented by Lucky. The families arrived at the Fruitvale grocery store expecting to participate in a Warriors holiday video when they were surprised to find Warriors players Festus Ezeli, Draymond Green, Richard Jefferson and Carl Landry, along with Assistant Coach Michael Malone, walk out behind the deli counter to take each family on a shopping spree, courtesy of Lucky.

“It was crazy to surprise all the families and to have them clapping and cheering for us, that was a feeling I’ll probably remember for a lifetime,” claimed Warriors forward Carl Landry.

Each Warriors player then led one family around the supermarket, seeking out popular Thanksgiving staples such as a whole bird, stuffing mix, mashed potatoes, green beans and pumpkin pie. Pushing the cart for the Dunlap family, Warriors veteran Richard Jefferson was excited to make the family’s wishes of a traditional Thanksgiving holiday come true.

“It’s awesome around the holiday season and Thanksgiving to always share that spirit of giving and being thankful for the people in our community that support us on a day in, day out basis,” said Jefferson.

Domonicke Dunlap, a mother of three, felt very fortunate that her family was treated to this special surprise.

“As a mom and full-time student, every little bit helps and I’m so appreciative of Richard, the Warriors and Lucky for helping my family come together, enjoy each other and have some home-cooked food this Thanksgiving,” expressed Dunlap.

Warriors Center Festus Ezeli was overwhelmed by the enthusiasm and gratitude of the Pineda family, knowing their Thanksgiving feast is a little more special by participating in this event.

“I never celebrated Thanksgiving until I came to this country, but I’ve learned it’s all about being with your family, being thankful and generous with your community,” explained Ezeli. “Family means a lot to me, and I’m happy I could make this holiday a little bit better for the Pinedas.”

It seemed that a Warriors player could be found in any aisle helping a family fulfill their ideal Thanksgiving celebration.

“Carl [Landry] was so helpful when we were shopping, very humble and fun to be with, we appreciated his time and it means a lot to our family,” said Latashia Deloney, the mother of the family that shopped with Carl Landry.

In addition to $350 gift cards for each family, the families also received a Lucky gift bag to help the households stay stocked and healthy this holiday season. The gift bag included kitchen and households items such as paper plates, napkins and eating utensils, disinfectant wipes and hand soap. The Warriors also gave each family member in attendance a Warriors Happy Holidays gift bag including a t-shirt, picture frame, water bottle and notebook.

Additionally, The Clorox Company wanted to brighten the families winter months and treated each family with five tickets to an upcoming Warriors home game.

“It’s terrific to be with the Arreola family, shop for their groceries to have a great Thanksgiving dinner, and to also help the family come out to one of our games, it makes a great day even better,” said Warriors Assistant Coach Michael Malone.

All of the families felt fortunate to both meet a Warrior and shop for the holidays. To round out the experience, the players even surprised the families by being their cashier and carryout assistant for the event.

”This time of year, everyone is trying to get ready for the holidays, so I just wanted to give back as much as possible to the community,” said Warriors Rookie Forward Draymond Green.

Lucky Senior Manager of Partnership & Promotions Cindy Foy felt that Shop with the Warriors was a perfect way to celebrate the 2012 holiday season with the Bay Area’s basketball team, and more importantly to contribute.

“We’re very proud to be the grocery sponsor of the Golden State Warriors for the last six years, and we both love to give back to the community with which we serve with the Shop with a Warrior holiday event,” said Foy.

The Warriors will hold additional 15 Plays for the Holidays events throughout the months of November and December such as player holiday meet and greets, Bay Area school visits, toy drives, food servings at homeless shelters and more.