Report: Cavs veteran named Special Olympics Global Ambassador

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Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Tristan Thompson is adding a special honor to his career resume as the Cleveland Cavaliers veteran has been named a Special Olympics Global Ambassador.

“I’m excited and honored to partner with Special Olympics,” said Thompson, whose brother Amari was born with disabilities. “This is a great opportunity to support an amazing organization, but also use my platform and voice to help support athletes with intellectual disabilities. As a Global Ambassador, I will help inspire others to be more inclusive and take action to help change the stereotypes that exist for people with disabilities.”

After he was the No. 4 overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, Tristan Thompson played his first nine seasons in the league for the Cavaliers. He helped them reach the NBA Finals four straight seasons and win the franchise’s only NBA championship in 2016.

He has played 31 games for the Cavs this season after not playing during the regular season last season. He did appear in six playoff games for the Lakers.

As a Special Olympics Global Ambassador, Tristan Thompson is tasked with promoting inclusion through sport and will help support Special Olympics Canada and Special Olympics Ohio, among others. He joins former Cavaliers guard Ricky Rubio as well as current NBA players Devin Booker of the Phoenix Suns, Andre Drummond of the Chicago Bulls and Damian Lillard of the Milwaukee Bucks as ambassadors.

After signing with the Cavs in September, Tristan Thompson posted a message to the city on social media.

The 32-year-old is averaging 3.7 points and 3.8 rebounds per game as a reserve this season. He has contributed to the Cavs’ 21-15 record that includes a current three-game winning streak. They are back in action on Thursday night against the Brooklyn Nets.

The Cavs have been able to weather injuries to Darius Garland and Evan Mobley and the recent absence of Donovan Mitchell because of illness. The 27-year-old star remains a subject of trade rumors, though members of the organization’s front office have said they are wondering why people are even talking about that idea.

The University of Texas at Austin product also has played for the Boston Celtics, Sacramento Kings, Chicago Bulls and Indiana Pacers during his NBA career. He is one of only four Cavaliers players to have at least 5,000 points and 5,000 rebounds with the club, a group that includes LeBron James, Zydrunas Ilgauskas and Brad Daugherty.

Now bringing value to the Cavs with his play and veteran experience, Tristan Thompson will add his knowledge and support to the mission of Special Olympics as well.

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Mike is a veteran journalist who has covered the NBA for almost three decades. One of his favorite sports memories is the Cavaliers-Nets playoff series from 1993.