Slava Medvedenko will part with his two champion rings at an auction.

Slava Medvedenko will part with his two championship rings in an auction, and the two-time NBA champion also wants to help his war-torn homeland Ukraine through basketball connections. “The Lakers have already sent sports gear for over 500 children,” Medvedenko told the Münchner Merkur and the TZ. The 43-year-old played for the Los Angeles team from 2000 to 2006.

The L.A. Lakers, with whom Medvedenko celebrated his two titles in 2001 and 2002 alongside Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal, are planning “further financial help,” according to the Ukrainian. FIBA (basketball’s world governing body) has also offered support and a special programme. Many former companions from the NBA have come forward to help me. The sports world is standing together.”

He is currently in Warsaw “to participate in a charity basketball game. We want to raise funds and awareness of the war all over the world,” Medvedenko said: “We are very grateful for the support from our allies and people from Europe.”

When it came to the idea of auctioning off the master rings, his compatriots were the model. “Ukrainians donate a lot of money to the war, they give the shirt off their backs,” Medvedenko said, “children sell their toys to raise money for the army. We can’t just wait for weapons to be delivered to us. We have to take action ourselves.”