'It's for the community': Youth coach gives gift of nets to basketball courts across city

Coach Roman Perez says it's a job that someone has to do it so that kids can play the game that he grew up loving.

News 12 Staff

Aug 15, 2020, 2:53 PM

Updated 1,372 days ago

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A Bronx and Brooklyn youth basketball coach is on a mission to install brand new nets at courts across the city.
Coach Roman Perez says it's a job that someone has to do it so that kids can play the game that he grew up loving.
He has spent much of the past three weeks up in the air, with help from other members of the city's basketball community, tying up small but meaningful gifts at local courts.
Perez, who grew up near a Unionport court in the Bronx, says far too often kids don't get to experience the satisfying "swoosh" of ball plunging through a net because of net-less hoops. It's even more true after basketball court and playgrounds were locked up for months due to the pandemic.
"If you're a ball player, you know when you shoot and hear that 'swoosh' -- there's no better feeling," says Perez.
After a post online about the effort, Perez's inbox starting blowing up with messages from people all over the boroughs. Support from teammates and players flowed in as well.
So far, 97 new nets have been installed at 45 courts and counting.
Perez says he isn't going to stop giving back, but he's calling on city leaders to make sure basketball courts are kept up so kids can play and thrive.
New York City Parks says in the past six years, more than 190 courts have been renovated in the Bronx and Brooklyn, with more in progress. News 12 is told that anyone who has an issue with a local court should report it through 311.
To get a capital renovation started at your local park or court, you can get in touch with your elected officials, the Partnership for Parks, or go to PeopleMakeParks.org.


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