Atlanta Hawks’ rookie forward DeAndre Bembry plans to wear No. 95 to honor his younger brother, Adrian, who was shot and killed two weeks prior to the 2016 NBA Draft.
He will notably become the first player in NBA history to wear No. 95 as well. Players have worn No. 94 (Evan Fournier) and No. 96 (Metta World Peace and Don Ray), but never 95.
In an interview with Basketball Insiders, Bembry discussed his plans to honor his brother and to use his platform to help prevent gun violence.
“I’m wearing No. 95 for him,” Bembry said. “Also, we’re going to do events about [preventing gun violence] in a number of cities. We’re still doing all of the paperwork, and I’m trying to find different foundations to get involved with. I’ve just been talking with my mother about what we want to do and talking to my lawyers as we try to get all the paperwork done. In addition to here in Atlanta, I want to do something in Philly, New Jersey and Charlotte because those are all areas where I actually lived in and got to see a lot of different things.
“I’m just trying to get that all finalized and I’ve been talking to the National Basketball Players Association about it as well. I think I’m going to try to get it going after my first season so that people know who I am a bit more and know my story. I think that’s better rather than me just trying to do it now and nobody understands what’s going on.”
The Hawks selected Bembry our of St. Joseph’s University with the 21st overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft. As a junior in 2015-2016, he averaged 17.7 points, 7.8 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game. The stat-sheet stuffer also added 1.4 steals and 0.8 blocks per game in what would become his final collegiate campaign.