Devin Booker's selection to the All-NBA Rookie First Team is the second-coolest Devin Booker news to come out today. The first is this: On Tuesday, while Booker was in New York City as the Phoenix Suns' representative at the NBA Draft Lottery, he spent the day with Jenna Warren, a 16-year-old Phoenix Suns super fan with Down syndrome.
They shared an emotional hug at the start of the day. Booker, who is only three years older than Warren, took his friend to Central Park, Carmine's Italian restaurant, the NBA Store (where she received a custom Suns "Warren" jersey—No. 1, of course, to match Booker), the draft lottery, and more. Booker shouted his buddy out from a Q&A onstage at the lottery. Warren waved to the crowd as they applauded.
"I do notice, you know, they have like a bond, right from the beginning," said Gracie Colvin, Warren's mother. "Sometimes you can kind of tell, and as a productive mom, I will kind of like, 'stay with me,' and hold her back, but I never have with Devin. I've always felt like, 'go ahead.' I just felt like he really was truly drawn to her, so I never felt like there was any ulterior motives. It's always been genuine."
Their genuine friendship is clear throughout the video. Booker personally invited Warren and her family to the lottery earlier this month.
A video posted by Devin Booker (@dbook) on May 6, 2016 at 10:26am PDT
She quickly, and enthusiastically, accepted the invitation.
A video posted by jenna (@jennatude1) on May 6, 2016 at 10:51am PDT
Warren's Instagram has since been flooded with photos from her draft lottery day experience. As Booker put it, they shared "memories that will last forever."
The friends first met April 3 prior to a Suns-Utah Jazz matchup. During warm-ups, Booker noticed Warren was wearing his jersey, so he invited her onto the court to hang out. It didn't take long for Booker to build a strong friendship with Warren and her parents.
A photo posted by jenna (@jennatude1) on Apr 26, 2016 at 10:37am PDT
These stories come around a lot, and athletes are frequently given similar opportunities to make a kid's day, but they don't have to take it, and many pass it up. Very few do as much with the opportunity as Booker has. He deserves props. Furthermore, he initiated their relationship and has since kept up with his buddy to make sure she was happy.
That's what friendship is all about.
A photo posted by Devin Booker (@dbook) on May 18, 2016 at 12:30pm PDT
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