It’s not quite “The Bad Boys” of the Detroit Pistons, “The Splash Brothers” with the Golden State Warriors or the legendary “Showtime” crew of the Los Angeles Lakers.
These Romulus Police and Fire Department basketball players and others are best known for protecting the community instead of the rim and winning the hearts of children and families instead of championships.
Acknowledging that there seems to be something about officers willing to stop what they’re doing to engage in a few minutes of hoops was the inspiration behind a fundraiser Romulus Police recently jumped on.
Romulus Police Chief Robert Pfannes said he was approached by an organization called Royalty Empowerment, a group of young gamers while on a tour of first responders.
The organization’s mission is to bridge the gap between law enforcement in urban and underserved communities.
The game also served as the first fundraiser for the Romulus department store with a cop Christmas initiative.
A big day was made of the competition, with a raffle for the winner to be named city official for the day, a Nintendo Switch giveaway, gift baskets and more.
The winner of City Official of the Day will get a chance to see what it’s like to be the Mayor of Romulus, the Director of the Fire Department, and even a 34th District Judge.
According to Pfannes, the event was a slam dunk, raising more than $1,200 to go toward needy holiday items for children.
As for the match itself, well, the team took one on the chin.
The loss did not come without a long list of excuses.
Romulus Police released a statement about the game along with an explanation for the loss on their social media account.
“The first responders put up a valiant effort but lost 44-48 to a tough opponent, (editor’s note – the sun was in our eyes, we were tired, the officials were in favor of Royalty Empowerment, and we wanted to make sure they would come back next year),” the ministry posted on its website immediately after the competition. , laughing and playing intense basketball. We look forward to playing them again in the future.
The police chief said the first responder team consisted of officers, firefighters and some fairly young and talented high school girls.
It was an event where there was no shortage of volunteers looking to enter the field.
Pfannes said up to 25 first responders were ready to play.
The chief said an officer only slept about an hour and a half due to his shift, but set his alarm to be there in time for the game.
“He thought the cause was so worthy and wanted to be there,” Pfannes said.
What was so impressive to the police chief was that their first responders included family members.
While Pfannes thought it best to keep his basketball days retired, he said his son played in his absence.
Although this is the first time the team has played together, the chief said to stay tuned for future events, which will include the department’s annual bike ride.