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Kaman delights Macker fans, tournament organizers in IM

Chris Kaman, who played 12 seasons in the NBA, retiring in 2016, signs autographs during this past weekend’s Gus Macker tournament in Iron Mountain. Kaman led Central Michigan University to an NCAA tournament first-round win in 2003. He was named an NBA All-Star in 2010.

IRON MOUNTAIN — A 7-foot former NBA star has been recognized for the number of games he played in a season, for blocked shots per game and for his selection to the NBA Rookie All-Star Team.

After retirement from the NBA, Chris Kaman has continued his love of basketball by playing in Gus Macker 3-on-3 basketball tournaments throughout the country.

At the Iron Mountain Gus Macker Tournament this past weekend, Kaman — known as “The Cavemen” — also stood above all other players by showing his love of family, children and Gus Macker basketball by posing with children and families for photos; signing programs, shoes and shirts; and talking to young players about basketball and other interests.

“As Chris interacted with family members, especially young children, he was so kind, friendly and genuinely interested in what his fans had to say,” said Barb Reisner, event co-coordinator.

“The Gus Macker event organizers have another name for Chris — we call him the Macker IM Hero,” said Reisner, a coach in Wisconsin for 22 years.

“When Chris comes off the court instead of sitting down with his head down, he immediately stands up when children are near to greet them, smile and ask how they like the game of basketball,” said Reisner. “So often children are asked, ‘Who is your hero?’ Former NBA player and Central Michigan University basketball star Chris Kaman is a great answer,” she said.

“Being able to return to play or watch the Gus Macker tournaments every year means connecting with one big family who all love basketball,” said Reisner. “Iron Mountain is proud to have Chris Kaman in their Gus Macker family.”

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