The news can be depressing at times. Thankfully, the sports world usually isn’t.
Yahoo Sports is taking a weekly look at the true spirit of sport — the highlights that will warm your heart and the acts of kindness that go beyond the game.
Ott collects plenty of food alongside the Cup
During his 14-year NHL career, Steve Ott was notorious for his competitive edge and ability to get under the skin of his opponents.
Despite having all of the tools to be an effective postseason performer, the closest that he ever got to lifting Lord Stanley’s mug was when he fell to the Detroit Red Wings — the eventual Stanley Cup champions — in the Western Conference Final while with the Dallas Stars in 2008.
So, when the 36-year-old won hockey’s ultimate prize as an assistant coach with the St. Louis Blues in June, he took the opportunity to do some good during his day with the trophy.
While in Windsor, Ont. — the town in which he played his junior hockey — Ott and his shiny companion were pretty popular. However, if you wanted to meet the two of them, you had to pay a small fee: A non-perishable food item.
The idea, based on the photo above taken by Philip Pritchard, was a resounding success.
Everything that was collected went to the Community Support Centre of Essex and Community Food Pantry, according to Dan O’Leary of NHL.com.
On top of the Cup’s time spent supporting the drive, it was the star of a parade and made an appearance at the equestrian practice of Ott’s daughter.
Damian Lillard buys group of random kids plenty of shoes
Sometimes, the best acts of kindness are those of the random variety.
Just ask a few kids that were shopping at an Adidas store recently.
While looking at what the store had to offer, they were approached by Damian Lillard of the Portland Trailblazers, a four-time NBA All Star. Following some quick introductions, he made his offer very clear to each of them: Grab yourself five pairs of shoes, on me.
The looks on the faces of these lucky youngsters is priceless.
After the video began making the rounds on social media, the 29-year-old point guard was asked if the gesture was truly as random as it appeared. According to him, it completely was.
“I was shopping and my Adidas rep told me how much my Adidas card held and I saw those kids and told him ima get them some shoes ... and he recorded it ... the family was cool too,” he wrote on Twitter.
Having the opportunity to meet an NBA superstar out of the blue is pretty special. After what Lillard did for these kids, there’s no way they’ll forget the meeting.
More coverage on Yahoo Sports