The NBA's Minnesota Timberwolves and WNBA's Minnesota Lynx are entering a multi-year partnership with The Minneapolis Foundation in an effort to fight racism and bring communities together to take action following the death of George Floyd in police custody, the teams announced Wednesday.
"Minneapolis is a special place. I want all people of color to experience this amazing city without fear," Timberwolves head coach Ryan Saunders said. "We talk a lot about actions over words; we need to make meaningful change and that starts with partnering with The Minneapolis Foundation."
Saunders will join Lynx head coach and general manager Cheryl Reeve on one of two advisory committees that will supervise the disbursement of the Fund for Safe Communities. The fund aims to "prevent further violence, address systemic inequities, reform the criminal justice system, and heal communities affected by this tragedy," according to the statement.
"I am proud of the ways in which the Minnesota Lynx have used our voices to stand up for social justice," Reeve said. "The senseless murder of George Floyd has strengthened our resolve to bring about change in the inequities that face our black and brown communities.
"This alignment with The Minneapolis Foundation will allow us to directly impact these inequities as well as be active participants in the healing of our communities."
Players from both teams will be featured in future programs and initiatives targeted at ending systemic racism, according to the announcement.