Marvel’s Simu Liu and NBA star Jeremy Lin join the youth association at a celebrity basketball game

Canadian superstar Simu Liu and NBA champion Jeremy Lin have teamed up with the Canadian Chinese Youth Athletic Association to host a celebrity basketball game at the University of Toronto’s Goldring Center on Saturday.

The event was attended by more than 20 celebrities, athletes and personalities from the North American-Asian community. His goal was to raise money for the Jeremy Lin Foundation and the CCYAA’s new community center.

Liu is probably best known for his role as Shang-Chi in the 2021 Marvel film Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and as Jung Kim on CBC’s Kim’s convenience. Lin is a former NBA player and the first Asian American to win the NBA championship, which he won in 2019 with the Toronto Raptors.

The two joined forces at the event to promote athletics and the arts for Toronto’s Asian youth.

Jeremy Lin (left), Simu Liu (center) and CCYAA Senior Director Clement Chu discuss Saturday’s basketball game with members of the media. (CBC)

“We are all united under this common goal of celebrating our achievements across all media and playing this game in support of philanthropy and charity,” Liu told the media.

“Many communities are not adequately represented in the media and I think we cannot emphasize enough how much the media influences our perceptions.”

Carli Yim, board member of the CCYAA, said the organization’s goal is to promote sports and a healthy lifestyle among Asian youth. It tries to balance the importance of being healthy and staying active with other goals like education and well-being.

A portion of the money raised will go to the CCYAA Community Center, which aims to create an inclusive space for Asian youth to participate in sports and the arts without barriers.

“Our goal is to provide accessible programs. That’s what some of the funds will be used for,” she said.

“Resilience, Endurance, Confidence”

Speaking to the media, Lin reflected on the life lessons he’s learned through basketball and how he hopes youth will learn those lessons and break down barriers.

“It taught me communication, leadership, teamwork, resilience, perseverance and confidence,” he said. “

Lin added that he grew up in a world where being an Asian actor or athlete is “out of the realm of possibility.” He hopes future Asian athletes will have a chance to be themselves in their field and not be compared to the few predecessors before them – like himself or NBA Hall of Famer Yao Ming.

“Eventually, you’re not going to be the token Asian anymore, and that’s a big part of creating opportunity for the next generation,” Lin said.

Fans line up to attend the CCYAA Celebrity Classic at the University of Toronto’s Goldring Center on Saturday. (CBC)

Established in 2011, the Jeremy Lin Foundation has undertaken various works including raising funds for COVID-19 relief efforts and helping to raise awareness of the rising anti-Asian racism during the pandemic.

Its mission is to empower multiracial youth through community empowerment and narrative change programs.

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