As a child growing up in Würzburg, Germany, Maxi Kleber spent the majority of his time on outdoor basketball courts to learn the game and stay out of trouble.
“I remember when I was six years old. I came with my friends and we played outside b. It’s also where I made new friends,” said Kleber, the Mavs forward, of how the outdoor courts have shaped his life. “My mom always told us, ‘I’d rather you played basketball and stayed out of trouble.
“That’s where it all started for me and my older brother who is two years older. We took the basketball and went out on the court,” Kleber continued. “I wasn’t really strong enough. to shoot, but I was just there dribbling.”
Kleber, the Mavericks and the Mavs Foundation recently unveiled a brand new basketball court at Frazier Revitalization in South Dallas. It was the 30th basketball court in the North Texas area renovated and donated by the Mavs and their foundation.
Frazier Revitalization, a nonprofit organization working in the Frazier community for more than 15 years, provides direct after-school enrichment to at-risk minority youth in the South Dallas area, most of whom live in the Frazier Townhomes subsidized housing complex. .
Presented by Sprite, the renovations include an outdoor basketball court, fencing, lighting and equipment replacement to ensure young people have a place to play while encouraging healthy living for residents of the community.
Mavs In-Arena host Chris Arnold served as MC for the unveiling on July 6. The youngsters also heard words of encouragement from Kleber, who also attended a mini basketball clinic with Mavs Academy staff.
Frazier Revitalization board member Antong Lucky was also on hand to help dedicate the new land.
“I’m a resident of this community, I grew up in this community, so I just want to say thank you to the whole team,” Lucky said. “I remember when we had this bike rim. So (it’s special) to have a real goal with lights and a nice pitch.
Kleber encouraged the youngsters to be proud of their new pitch and to use it for fun and making memories.
“It’s a good thing to have a court here. I think it’s amazing,” he said. “I hope you treat it with respect because it’s your playground now and you want to make sure everyone has the same chance to make new friends and meet new people here because those friendships remain forever.
“I still have friends that I met on the basketball court. It’s an amazing thing to have this outdoor court. I hope you have fun.