On Monday, December 5th, the Lakers were able to grant the wish of 13 year old, Cole Paquette. An avid Lakers fan from Bakersfield, Vermont, Cole loves basketball and enjoys playing the game with his friends. Cole was recently diagnosed with neuroendocrine carcinoma, a very rare malignant disorder, and is halfway through his treatment. Together, the Lakers and the Make-A-Wish Foundation worked to make Cole’s wish of meeting D’Angelo Russell and the Los Angeles Lakers come true.
During the week of Thanksgiving, Cole was brought into his elementary school’s gym where he was surprised by his family, friends, basketball team, coaches, and teachers to reveal the granting of his wish. The gym was decorated with purple and gold balloons along with basketball themed treats, including cookies, cupcakes, and cider.
After being flown out to Los Angeles with his parents, brother, and sister, Cole enjoyed a memorable night at STAPLES Center with the Lakers. Before the game began, Cole participated in the Lakers’ shoot around, along with the Lakers trainers. He helped Lou Williams and Jordan Clarkson warm up for the game, by making passes and catching rebounds.
As the Lakers were ready to take the court, Cole and his siblings joined the Lakers High Five Kids to high five the entire Lakers team as they ran out of the tunnel. Cole then went onto the court, along with Timofey Mozgov and Luol Deng, where he was introduced as the Lakers’ honorary team captain.
During halftime, Cole and his family were taken into the Lakers locker room, where they were given Lakers merchandise and met the team. Nick Young, Jose Calderon, and Cole’s favorite Laker, D’Angelo Russell, all spent extra time signing autographs and taking pictures with Cole and his family before the game. Meeting D’Angelo Russell was definitely the highlight of Cole’s night, as the two were able to share quality time together.