Kevin Love and Russell Westbrook will forever be linked for their one year as teammates on the 2007-08 UCLA team that reached the Bruins’ third-straight Final Four as they then went on to be top-five picks in that summer’s NBA Draft.
Now they share the distinction as giving their alma mater the biggest donation ever by a former hoops student-athlete from the school.
Love contributed an unspecified amount toward the school’s Mo Ostin Basketball Center project that the school says matches Westbrook’s record 2015 donation, and he will have the building’s strength-and-conditioning center named after him.
“UCLA will always be my home,” Love said in a statement. “I have such fond memories of my time here from meeting Coach (John) Wooden, to our run to the Final Four. I want to give back to the school and help prepare all the athletes who come through UCLA sports programs for their next steps, just like my time on campus prepared me.”
UCLA is building what it is calling a state-of-the art practice facility that will be located near Pauley Pavilion that it hopes to open next fall.
“From his selflessness and dedication on the court here in Pauley Pavilion to the thoughtfulness and philanthropy he has exhibited as an NBA star,” athletic director Dan Guerrero said in a statement, “Kevin is a tremendous ambassador for this university. To see him, still very early in his life journey, give back to the UCLA Basketball program in this way is certainly a testament to the bonds our student-athletes build here. While we are grateful for his generosity, we are even more proud of the remarkable man Kevin has become.”