Rockets’ Dwight Howard leads community blood drive

To honor the determined fight of Craig Sager, Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard is inviting the public to show their support for the broadcaster and others in need of life-saving blood transfusions.

IMG_5286A blood drive honoring Sager will be held from 11 a.m. through 7 p.m. at Toyota Center on Wednesday. Sager, a beloved member of the NBA community, has been battling acute myeloid leukemia for the past two years.

The drive is being organized by the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center with support from the Houston Rockets. All who donate or attempt to donate will receive a T-shirt featuring pictures of Howard and Sager. The shirt will be a great wardrobe addition, especially for those heading to the Rockets’ season finale game at the Toyota Center that evening.

The Gulf Coast Marrow Donor Program will also be at the drive for people who wish to join the Be the Match ® Registry for potential donors. Sager has received bone marrow transplants from his son, Craig II, as part of his treatment.

Howard, who is also founder and president of the D12 Foundation, said he wanted to host the drive to bring awareness to the need for blood for Sager and other leukemia patients.

DSC_2901“Craig Sager is admired by so many in the NBA family, including my Rockets teammates and our loyal fans,” Howard said. “We honor Craig’s fight against leukemia, and want the public to know how important it is to donate blood to aid people like Craig, who rely on life-saving transfusions. Craig has always been a person who could bring people together. It is no surprise that once again he is inspiring others through his courage.”

To schedule an appointment, visit or call 1(888) 482-5663.

ABOUT THE BLOOD CENTER: The Blood Center is the primary supplier of blood components to more than 170 hospitals and health care facilities in a 26-county Texas Gulf Coast region. Donors must be at least 17 years of age, weigh a minimum of 110 pounds and be in good general health. Individuals who are 16 years old, at least 122 pounds, in good general health and have parental consent also may be eligible to donate. The donation process is simple, taking only about one hour.

Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center is asking its donors to Commit for Life. It takes three simple steps: 1) Know how your type matters; 2) Donate what matters today; and 3) Commit to your next donation. Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center is an independent, nonprofit blood center that is not affiliated with the American Red Cross.

ABOUT BE THE MATCH: Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center houses the Gulf Coast Marrow Donor Program and is an accredited donor center for the National Marrow Donor Program which operates the Be The Match® Registry – the world’s largest listing of potential marrow donors and donated cord blood units. It is its mission to educate and register donors for the Be The Match Registry, to promote awareness of the life-saving need for marrow or peripheral blood stem cell donations from adult donors to patients awaiting transplant, and to raise funds for donor testing, typing and recruitment.

ABOUT THE D12 FOUNDATION: The D12 Foundation is focused on facilitating positive change in the lives of American youth – as well as girls in East Africa – through strategic programmatic and funding partners. Guided by D12 Foundation founder and president, Dwight Howard, it seeks to strategically and effectively help close critical community “gaps” by making best use of its unique position and talents, and partnering with individuals and organizations who share its vision.



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