NBA legend Rasheed Wallace’s impact on the sport of basketball is indelible, and the Philadelphia native was recently honored by his hometown for his transformative presence on the court and in the local community. According to The Philadelphia Tribune, the NBA champion had a street renamed in his honor.
The 1700 block of Hunting Park Avenue, where his alma mater Simon Gratz High School stands, now bears the name “Rasheed Wallace Road;” serving as an homage to Wallace’s community-driven influence. The four-time NBA All-Star has led philanthropic efforts including donating food and sneakers to youth, hosting coat drives and providing clean water to those living in Flint as they dealt with issues surrounding lead contamination. He’s also hosted basketball camps for youngsters.
News about the street renaming comes weeks after it was revealed Wallace joined the Los Angeles Lakers coaching staff. Wallace was honored by City Councilmember Cindy Bass.
“It’s definitely love and I’m thankful for it. I’m blessed. I take it all in stride. And I think the best thing about it is that it’s right next to my old alma mater. So it all just coincides together,” Wallace told The Philadelphia Tribune. “It means that, I was recognized for all of the hard work and a lot of the things that I did. I always came back for many years. We did free basketball camps at Gratz, one of the first camps outside of Sonny Hill camp to give kids hot lunch, you know, just doing things for the community.”
He searched for the words to express his gratitude for the honor.
“It’s always been love but this right here, I mean this, I’m at a loss for words,” Wallace continued. “To me this beats a lot of things. This beats any type of mural or any type of trophy. Like you just said, it’s a whole road like, it’s gonna come up on GPS!”