Harlem Legends bring basketball fun to Bay for hurricane relief

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - The Harlem Legends brought their brand of basketball fun to Bay High School on Saturday afternoon.

Led by Michael Douglas, the Legends are a group of former Harlem Globetrotters, NBA, NFL, and Olympic athletes who put on a show. Part skit and part game, their event is all entertainment for a good cause: hurricane relief.

After Hurricane Michael, they reached out to Bay to see how they could help. Of course, the way they could help was by doing what they do best.

"The best thing since sliced bread! I love what I do," Douglas said with a smile, twirling a basketball on his finger. "I've been doing it for many years as a Globetrotter traveling around the world. We are ambassadors of goodwill."

The Legends have been to Bay three times, all as part of their mission in America and beyond.

"We travel around the world assisting different schools and organizations in their fundraising and entertainment efforts," Douglas explained. "We decided to bring our show back here to bring a little entertainment and fun back to Panama City."

Hosting a kids' clinic beforehand for $25 and the event with seats for $20 each, proceeds benefit the Bay Tornadoes' athletic department Bay County Emergency Operations Center.

Community figures such as First Baptist Church pastor Jay Powell (formerly the Gulf Coast men's basketball head coach), Sheriff Tommy Ford, and North Bay Haven principal Mike McLaughlin are among the team of 20 Bay County All Stars who stoof in for the Washington Generals.

Fundraising might as well be fun.

"We've talked ad-infinitum about how much money we've lost and how much devastation we've had," Bay athletic director Michael Grady said. "Fundraising is something we have to do all the time. We would like to do it in a way that the community can have fun and they can partake in the fundraising as opposed to somebody knocking on your door and asking for money. We're happy we can put on a good show for everybody and everybody having fun, a good representation of what our community stands for."

Douglas and Grady said the Legends and Bay have a great relationship and would like to return in the future.