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Philadelphia 76ers sign high schooler with Down syndrome to two-day contract

Feb 17, 2014, 11:16 PM EDT

The Philadelphia 76ers have lost an NBA-high eight straight games, falling to 15-39 and 29th in league. Their 3-point shooting, 31.4 percent, also ranks 29th. They need help.

Enter Kevin Grow.

Grow, a high school senior with Down syndrome, signed a ceremonial two-day contract with Philadelphia on Monday. (Take that, Adam Silver.)

Grow served as his high school team’s manager for four years before suiting up in the final two games. Saturday, Grow scored 14 points on 4-of-5 3-point shooting. Now, he’s ready to make that preps-to-pros jump. CSN Philly:

Grow will participate in the team’s practice Monday, eat dinner with the team, and receive Sixers gear.

Before the Sixers host the Cavaliers on Tuesday, Grow will receive a custom jersey at his very own locker in the team’s locker room. He will stand with the team during the National Anthem and take the court with the Bensalem High School team during a timeout for a special presentation.

Because Grow is on a ceremonial contract, I don’t think he’ll be eligible to play against the Cavaliers. But in case he does, I’m here to help Cleveland prepare a scouting reporting. Let’s review video of his last game and create a plan for defending Grow.

  • Not afraid to mix it up inside and get to the basket. Kobe assists are a real concern, so be sure to box out his teammates on the slight chance he misses.
  • Tremendous 3-point shooter. DO NOT HELP OFF HIM ON THE PERIMETER.
  • Incredibly inspirational. Try to keep focused on the game rather than clapping for his baskets – but good luck with that one.
  1. bjornreyes - Feb 18, 2014 at 12:11 AM

    Wow. This is a good story. Awesome guys from the Sixers who thought of this.

  2. 00maltliquor - Feb 18, 2014 at 1:16 AM

    How cool would that be if they’d allow him in for at least 2 min. of garbage time. Too bad you need to be at least one year out of high school and 18/19.

  3. Kevin S. - Feb 18, 2014 at 6:23 AM

    So, I know there are rules and all… but if the game was a blowout, and they tried to just stick him in at the end, what’s going to stop them? The refs I guess, but is Cleveland really going to protest the move?

  4. 2016olympics - Feb 18, 2014 at 8:00 AM

    ….but enough about Royce White already.

  5. mp4philly - Feb 18, 2014 at 9:21 AM

    Lol! Lol! That scouting report part was great. Great work.

  6. asimonetti88 - Feb 18, 2014 at 10:42 AM

    great great story… props to the Sixers for recognizing this young man

  7. psubeerman21 - Feb 18, 2014 at 10:50 AM

    I heard the Knicks are interested in the kid, and might give up a future first for him…but a great story.

  8. stayhigh_247 - Feb 18, 2014 at 11:06 AM

    Nicely done Philly.

  9. granadafan - Feb 18, 2014 at 12:36 PM

    I love the reaction of his teammates when he was making the shots and at the end of the game. It’s obvious they think very highly of him. Props to the other team for giving him the opportunity to play. Great job by the 76ers too.

  10. djshnooks - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:39 PM

    It’s like J-Mac from Rochester, NY.

    I love seeing stories like this…restores my faith in humanity in this dark world.

    Good for him, hope he has the time of his life and never forgets this experience! :-)

    (I’ve coached a kid with Down syndrome once…seeing that kid smile just because he was with his friends on a football field was the most rewarding thing of my life.)

  11. fishmatt - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:50 PM

    The reaction of his teammates is great! In a world with so much negativity it’s things like this that restore your faith in humanity a bit.

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