NBA G League player Zeke Upshaw dies after collapsing during game
Grand Rapids Drive forward was rushed to hospital Saturday night
A Detroit Pistons developmental player who collapsed on the court during a NBA G League game in Michigan has died.
The Grand Rapids Drive says 26-year-old Zeke Upshaw died at a hospital Monday. No cause was disclosed. He collapsed Saturday night near the end of a game against the Long Island Nets.
Statement from the Drive: "The Drive family is mourning the tragic loss of Zeke Upshaw. He had a warm personality and was a tremendous representative of our organization both on and off the court. Our thoughts are with all of Zeke’s family and friends during this difficult time." <a href="https://t.co/FxQtaJoqbG">pic.twitter.com/FxQtaJoqbG</a>—@grdrive
Upshaw's mother, Jewel Upshaw, released a statement thanking the team and fans. Team owner Steve Jbara says the Grand Rapids area was fortunate to enjoy Upshaw's commitment to the community, especially children.
Statement from Jewel Upshaw, Zeke's mother: “After continued efforts from the medical team at Spectrum Health, Zeke made his transition at 11:16 am. To family, friends, teammates, coaches, fans & confidants, thank you for your prayers and support during this most difficult time. <a href="https://t.co/1AutFtIFwU">pic.twitter.com/1AutFtIFwU</a>—@grdrive
Malcolm Turner, the G League's president, said the league is devastated by Upshaw's death and extended the league's condolences to Upshaw's family and friends.
"Zeke was an outstanding young man whose powerful belief in himself and uncommon perseverance led to a successful professional basketball career. A beloved member of the Grand Rapids Drive, Zeke's continuous improvement and tireless work ethic were hallmarks of his career," he said in a news release.
Upshaw had scored 11 points to help the Drive earn a playoff spot with the 101-99 victory Saturday. He was in his second season with the Drive. The 6-foot-6 swingman from Chicago played three seasons at Illinois State University and finished his college career at Hofstra.